Donald Trump has announced plans to launch a social media platform called Truth Social that will rolled be out early next year.
The former president, who was banned from Facebook and Twitter earlier this year, says his goal is to rival the tech companies that have denied him the megaphone that was paramount to his rise.
“I’m excited to soon begin sharing my thoughts on Truth Social and to fight back against big tech,” Trump said in a statement.
While the platform is pitched as a free and open communication service that encourages “honest global conversation”, the terms of service agreement prohibits users from making fun of the site. To access the platform, users agree not to “disparage, tarnish, or otherwise harm, in our opinion, us and/or the site”.
Trump announced the news in a press release on Wednesday, saying the platform will be open to “invited users” for a beta launch in November, with plans to make it available to the broader public in the beginning of next year. Truth Social will be a product of a new venture called the Trump Media & Technology Group, which was created through a merger with Digital World Acquisition Corp. The group said it seeks to become a publicly listed company.
A link to the Truth Social website directs users to sign up for a wait list or to pre-order the app via the Apple App Store. There, screenshots of the Truth Social app show a user profile that bears a striking resemblance to a Twitter profile. The name Truth Social was trademarked by Trump Group Corp in July, according to public filings.
Screenshots of the Truth Social app that Donald Trump plans to launch. Photograph: Apple App Store
Though the platform is not officially open to users yet, some were able to access the app and create an account through a URL that has now been taken down. A reporter at the Daily Dot was able to create an account and profile as @DonaldTrump.
In July, Trump sued Facebook, Twitter, and Google for allegedly censoring him. The companies have so far upheld their bans and suspensions on the former president, though Facebook plans to revisit its decision in two years.
Was just able to setup an account using the handle @donaldtrump on ‘Truth Social,’ former President Donald Trump’s new social media website.
Although the site is not officially open, a URL was discovered allowing users to sign up anyway. pic.twitter.com/MRMQzjNhma
— Mikael Thalen (@MikaelThalen) October 21, 2021
“We live in a world where the Taliban has a huge presence on Twitter, yet your favorite American president has been silenced,” Trump said in a statement. “This is unacceptable.”
A Guardian request for a comment from the Trump Media & Technology Group on the new venture was not returned before publication.
It isn’t the first time Trump has plotted a return to social media. His previous efforts have included an online communication tool called “From the Desk of Donald J Trump”, which has been described as a “glorified blog”.
The Associated Press contributed reporting