Launch of Trump’s social networking app; suffers from technical failures

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NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump’s social networking app that the former president hopes to rival Twitter was launched on Monday, as the mogul seeks a new digital arena to connect with his followers and fight the boundaries set by the tech giants to free speech, a year after being banned by Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

Its Truth Social app was offered for download on the Apple App Store to a limited number of subscribers who pre-ordered it. Other people added to a waitlist should have access to the app for the next 10 days.

The site experienced technical outages shortly after launch and subscribers were reportedly unable to access it for hours. Others had trouble logging in. Anyone who wants to download the app has to wait until next month.

“Given the huge demand, we have included you on our waiting list,” reads a message to some people who have tried to enter the platform, which adds: “We love you.

Trump hopes Truth Social will appeal to the millions of people who have followed him on Twitter as he aspires to run for president again, sparking a wave of other followers to justify the billions of dollars investors have bet on him. the company. Shares of a company that plans to buy Trump Media and the Technology Group – the group that controls Truth Social – have soared in recent months.

According to Apple’s rankings, Truth Social was the most requested free app in the United States on Monday morning, beating even the children’s game “Talking Ben the Dog” and the HBO Max streaming service, as well as TikTok, YouTube, Instagram and Facebook.

Monday’s partial release follows a test release last week.

Trump was banned from major social media platforms after the attack on Capitol Hill on January 6 last year that he instigated, critics say. The ban has raised tough questions about free speech in a social media industry dominated by a few tech giants, a point that Trump and conservative media have criticized.

For their part, the Republicans were quick to take advantage of the launch of Truth Social to raise funds for their electoral campaigns.

“After more than a year of gagging by the liberal tyrants of Big Tech: TRUMP. IT’S BACK,” House Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy wrote in a fundraising email. Monday.

Groups like the Republican National Committee and the Congressional Leadership Fund have also raised funds since the launch.

“Our main goal here is to give people a voice again,” Trump Media CEO and former GOP congressman Devin Nunes told Fox News on Sunday. He also noted that the app offers “the opposite of a weirdo and a Silicon Valley tech oligarch telling people what they want to think and deciding who can be on the platform and who can’t. can not”.

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Associated Press writers Tali Arbel and Jill Colvin contributed to this report.

FILE – Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference, Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021, in Orlando, Florida. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

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