After a series of jerks, Trump announced the formation of TRUTH Social on Wednesday evening – an effort, he insisted, to “stand up to the tyranny of the Big Tech.” The stations will be called
tweets TRUTHs and Trump said he was “excited to start sharing my thoughts on TRUTH Social and fighting Big Tech soon”.
This is a particularly terrible idea that will almost certainly fail. And there are plenty of reasons for that!
1. Twitter already exists
. Do you know the whole axiom that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel? Well, Twitter already exists and has over 200 million users. There doesn’t seem to be any significant clamor among the general population for another microblogging website – although Twitter is far from perfect. Then there’s this: Trump sent his first tweet on May 4, 2009. (“Be sure to log in and watch Donald Trump Late Night with David Letterman as he presents the Top Ten List tonight,” he read
.) Which means he had 6 years to build his presence on the social media platform before he started using it – aggressively – to run for President in 2015/2016. He was a known commodity with many, many followers. He was not starting from scratch. With TRUTH social, it will be.
2. The conservative social space is overcrowded (and not doing well)
: Remember how Talking was the new Twitter for the Conservatives? Well, after a very brief spike in downloads following the Jan.6 riot on the U.S. Capitol (and Twitter’s decision to ban Trump), the app has all but disappeared in terms of relevance. “According to Sensor Tower data, Parler downloads increased from 517,000 in December  to 11,000 in June The Verge reported in July. Then there’s Gettr, a Twitter clone launched by Trump associate Jason Miller. Within days of its launch, hackers were able to take (and post) e- addresses. mail of 85,000 of its users. “Gettr, the last pro-Trump social network, is already a mess”, said TechCrunch
. While TRUTH Social has something that neither Parler nor Gettr had or have – Donald Trump – it’s still not clear whether the conservative universe of social media is big enough to support any of these. much less products 3.
3. Donald Trump is no longer president
. Make no mistake: Trump is still the most prominent and powerful actor in Republican politics. But, since being banned from Twitter, Facebook, and You Tube, his ability to direct coverage has been drastically curtailed. As the Washington Post’s Philip Bump noted in April
“[Trump’s] Interest in Google searches was lower than at any time since June 2015, as was the time it was seen on cable. Networks covered it much less, until the point reached last year when the pandemic overtook Trump in national attention. On top of that, average Trump mentions in March have returned to levels seen in November 2015. “
His attempt to start a post-presidential blog with grandiose ambitions ended with a whimper in June, stopping for good. As the New York Times said in June
âMr. Trump had become frustrated after hearing from friends that the site received little traffic and made it appear small and uninspiring, according to a person familiar with his thinking.
“The site, which cost a few thousand dollars to set up and was created for Mr. Trump by a company run by former campaign manager Brad Parscale, was intended to be an online hub for supporters to view statements from. the former president and communicate with him. “
Let’s be clear: some people will consume whatever Trump does. But this group is not big enough to launch a successful social network. Not even close.