The result is eminently surprising: any social network created by a figure as polarizing as Trump is practically guaranteed to fail.
Truth Social has now dropped to a dismal 35th place among social networks in the app store, according to market research firm SensorTower. Some members of the company’s own management seem to realize that the effort is a failure.
According to Reuters, the top executives in charge of technology and product development for Truth Social, Josh Adams and Billy Boozer, have left the company. (Adams did not respond to a request for comment and Boozer declined to comment to Reuters on his departure.)
Some users who have tried to register say that they have not been approved. And some of the content about major brands on the app doesn’t appear to come from the brands themselves, according to CNN.
When CNN asked a spokesperson for the wallstreetbets community on Reddit if they monitor their community’s content on Truth Social, the answer was revealing.
The spokesperson said that Truth Social was “running the account as an RSS feed under our subreddit name” and although Truth Social had offered to let the community manage their account themselves, the offer was “rejected” because “a principle foundation of our community remains apolitical.
The response reveals that individuals and organizations recognize that participating in this social network is a political act, one that aligns directly with the former president and all he has come to stand for. The 61 percent of American adults who, according to a March 2022 Marquette Law School poll, have an unfavorable opinion of the former president probably wouldn’t find that premise appealing.
Truth Social and Trump Media and Technology Group, the app’s parent company, did not immediately respond to a CNN request for comment.
Trump, remember, is famous for using social media to tweet what congressional investigators believe was essentially an invitation to extremists to storm Capitol Hill last year. The former president has denied any responsibility for the January 6 insurrection. As a result of the attack, he has been permanently banned
on Twitter and suspended for at least two years by Facebook.
Trump also refused to accept that he lost the 2020 presidential election, and even tried to overturn the results through failed litigation, pressure on election officials, and pressure on his vice president.
And he has been widely recognized as a man who makes misogynistic comments, calling everyone from Vice President Kamala Harris to Denmark’s Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen “nasty.” He also has a history of attacking minority groups, from Latino immigrants to Muslims. In his book, “Words on Fire: The Power of Inflammatory Language and How to Confront It,” Helio Fred Garcia found that after Trump verbally attacked groups, including Hispanics and Muslims, hate crimes against them increased.
In short, joining Truth Social is legitimizing the former president and his behavior. It’s no wonder many companies and individuals don’t clamor to do so: they recognize that joining would cause them self-inflicted reputational damage by mere association.
As a result, it is simply not possible for this social network to take off on any significant scale. After all, the value of a social network to a user largely depends on how many other people are using it. If users are unable to communicate with many other people and groups because they are not on the platform, joining becomes a less attractive proposition.
The idea that the value of something like a social network increases as its number of users increases is known as Metcalfe’s Law. Even if you don’t discuss politics on social media with a relative or friend you disagree with, you may enjoy seeing photos of your children growing up, or benefit from being able to contact them to arrange a carpool to practice. soccer game or planning Thanksgiving dinner.
While it’s remarkable that a social network started by a person who advertises himself as a successful businessman and former leader of the free world seems to be riddled with so much mismanagement, that’s not the ultimate root of the problem. here.
The insurmountable obstacle facing Truth Social is that Trump’s reputation has undermined his chances of long-term success.
Most Americans don’t want to be associated with anything he believes in. And a social network where you can’t socialize or relate to many people is doomed to failure.