Did we really need another Twitter?
That’s a good question to ask right now. With remarkably similar features, an unfiltered approach to disseminating political news, and a shaky business model, Truth Social debuted in late 2021 as a direct competitor to Twitter. Recently, the app has run aground financially, even to the point where the hosting provider has cried foul. A merger attempt also dried up. Meanwhile, if you are an Android phone user, you may have noticed the app is conspicuously absent.
I first started testing Truth Social a few months after launch. It took a while to gain access, because the app throttled who could start using the platform. Even back then, the soft launch reminded me of how the Clubhouse app couldn’t quite keep pace with user onboarding and also didn’t work with Android. I mentioned how I had “finally” tested the Truth Social app, and was not impressed.
It all seemed clunky at the time. The app wasn’t even accessible through a web browser initially, and then once those of us glued to Google Chrome all day could login and use the service, it seemed underwhelming. “Truth Social looks exactly like something a developer would make if they were asked to build an app that does only the Twitter basics and nothing more,” I said at the time.
That was then, this is now.
Six months after the browser version launched and still no Android app, still no innovative features, and still a one-sided approach to social media.
I’m comparing Truth Social to Clubhouse, but that isn’t really fair. I loved the Clubhouse app during the dark days of the pandemic, and used it constantly. It was a way to connect with a wide audience using an app that made it seem like real-time conversations had finally found a new home. I was wrong about that, because once we all started meeting in person again, it seemed superfluous. I haven’t used the Clubhouse app too much ever since.
With Truth Social, I was never enamored with it. You post a “truth” instead of a tweet, which is like calling a Kleenex a soft tissue instead. The app never really did anything new. I kept trying to use it several times, flipping through politically-motivated posts, and came to the conclusion that it was like a political action group had made an app under the guise of free speech.
Innovation is like a light on a distant hill. You know something is unique and interesting about a new product, and you move toward the light. I feel like Truth Social is the opposite. It’s a dark mound in a valley. It kind of smells. You move away from it because you don’t realize any of the benefits and there’s no reason to keep using it. For the typical user, you probably don’t want to join a political action group anyway. It smells, tastes, and looks rotten, even from a great distance.
My view is that the app never met a felt need in the social media market. Maybe Clubhouse did for a time, but right off the bat, it seemed like Truth Social had a hidden agenda. The app wasn’t designed to do something new, to make connections easier, or to provide a new suite of tools. The app still, to this day, just seems like a Twitter knock-off for one side of the aisle. It was designed to help Donald Trump.
It’s time to pull the plug.
The app is not gaining traction and it hasn’t really caught the attention of the masses. As a business proposition, it never really had a chance. The truth about Truth Social is that the entire business model was suspect from the very first post.