Former President Donald Trump on Wednesday announced the pending launch of a new social network called Truth Social, whose stated goal is to push back against Big Tech, according to a press release purported to come from one of his companies. The Trump Media and Technology Group, which made the announcement, said the social network will begin a limited beta launch in November, with a wider rollout expected in the first quarter of 2022.
“I created Truth Social and TMGT to stand up to the tyranny of Big Tech,” Trump said in the press release sent to the media. “We live in a world where the Taliban has a presence on Twitter, yet your favorite American president has been silenced.
“I’m excited to soon be sharing my thoughts on Truth Social and to fight back against Big Tech,” Trump said.
There’s a site for Truth Social where people can join a waiting list for the social network, as well as a link to preorder the iOS app. Screenshots of the app suggest Truth will have profile pages with a Twitter-like timeline of posts.
Trump’s use of Twitter redefined politics, letting him sidestep mainstream media to try to take hold of the political narrative. But Twitter banned Trump on Jan. 8, two days after a mob of his supporters stormed the US Capitol building in a riot that left several people dead, including a Capitol Police officer. Twitter said the ban was “due to the risk of further incitement of violence.”
In March, Jason Miller, a senior adviser to Trump, told Fox News that the former president would return with his own social media platform in “two or three months.” Trump did start his own official blog in May, but he shut it down one month later. Trump has been banned by both Twitter and Facebook since the deadly US Capitol Hill riot in January.
The former president sued those platforms alongside Twitter, alleging censorship and First Amendment violations, even though the First Amendment applies to the government, not to private companies like social media sites. Trump has for some time claimed without evidence that the companies discriminate against the right, a charge the firms have repeatedly denied.
Despite the creation of a new social media platform, Trump hasn’t forsaken Twitter. Earlier this month, the former president asked a US district judge to grant a preliminary injunction that would restore his account while his lawsuit against Twitter wends its way through the courts.
TMTG has agreed to merge with Digital World Acquisition Group, a Miami-based company listed on the Nasdaq, to form a new company chaired by Trump, according to the press release.
Digital World Acquisition Group is a special purpose acquisition company, or “blank check company,” according to a May filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. SPACs are shell corporations with no commercial operations listed on a public stock exchange with the purpose of acquiring or merging with a private company, this making it public as well.
Neither Digital World Acquisition Group nor a representative for Trump immediately responded to requests for comment.