By now you’ve heard the good news that Facebook is not going to reinstate Trump’s account, at least for the time being.
But Trump took matters into his own tiny hands. A month ago a spokesperson for Trump announced he would be returning to social media with his own social network platform. Yesterday the birth of the platform was announced —
According to team Trump, the outlet will enable the former president to continue sharing his thoughts and opinions despite being blocked indefinitely from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat.
“In a time of silence and lies, a beacon of freedom arises. A place to speak freely and safely. Straight from the desk of Donald J. Trump,” text on a video announcing the launch reads.
Except it’s just a blog. It’s not a “platform.” It doesn’t even qualify as
“social media” because it’s not interactive. It does not allow comments, although allegedly people can share Trump’s blog posts on social media. Allegedly.
Don’t let the fact that this webpage is connected to the internet fool you: This website is awful. The entire “communications platform” is a giant loophole designed to bypass Trump’s various social media bans by letting other people tweet out his message on his behalf. But the integration is gloriously janky.
That’s “janky” in the sense that the “share” and “like” buttons weren’t working yesterday. I’m betting the “donate” button works just fine, though.
Most of the posts up right now are gloating that Liz Cheney is awful and is about to be demoted and that Mitt Romney was “booed off the stage” in Utah, except that I don’t believe he was.
We’ll see if the blog brings back Trump’s social media presence. Meanwhile, Neal Rothschild writes at Axios that Trump’s spell over the media broke once he lost his megaphones. “Social media interactions about former President Trump have fallen 91% since January, according to exclusive data from NewsWhip,” he says.
By the numbers: Clicks to Trump stories fell 81% from January to February, another 56% from February to March and 40% from March to April, according to exclusive data from SocialFlow.
- Following impeachment, the biggest storylines related to Trump have been tied to Biden administration actions, including news about the border wall; speculation about a Trump social media platform; and news about allies like Rudy Giuliani and Kayleigh McEnany, per NewsWhip.
Between the lines: Trump’s ability to broadcast his thoughts to major social platforms disappeared in recent months, but so too did the imperative for news organizations to cover him.
- Post-presidency, Trump has tried to get his thoughts out through tweet-like press releases, which only get seen if media outlets pick them up.
“Trump’s social media superpower was never his ability to tweet — it was his ability to get the media to cover what he tweeted,” SocialFlow CEO Jim Anderson tells Axios.