Maybe Devin Nunes should have just gone back to raising cows.
The former Republican congressman from California left Congress and his position as the ranking GOP member of the House Intelligence Committee at the beginning of this year to become the Chief Executive Officer of the Trump Media & Technology Group — the company formed by the twice-impeached former president whom he served so loyally — to launch his new social media venture, Truth Social.
Judging from the plethora of technical problems and bugs that plagued the service in its debut last night, Nunes —whose agricultural degrees hardly provide him with the tech world experience one would expect of the CEO of an ambitious social media venture — may be regretting that decision, as people curious to check out Donald Trump’s latest attempt to divide people from their money reported massive difficulties in their attempts to register an account on the new platform.
Using the hashtag #SomethingWent Wrong, prospective members of the social media network vented their frustrations on the rival platform of Twitter.
“Something went wrong,” a notice reads if you attempt to make an account on Truth Social. pic.twitter.com/3oZLR8Tsu0
— Zachary Petrizzo (@ZTPetrizzo) February 21, 2022
Same thing happened to me when I went to sign up – definitely #somethingwentwrong . Cracking up at the ineptitude.
— Dr. StephanieB (@sboumedi) February 21, 2022
— StandForBetter.org (@StandForBetter) February 21, 2022
Truth Social is absolutely nowhere near being ready to launch. Couldn’t even enter date of birth – app already died. I built apps for 6 years. This is a basic fail.
— Tristan Snell (@TristanSnell) February 21, 2022
To test to see if the problems were still persisting this morning, this writer went to the Apple App Store to download the Truth Social app and create an account.
I, too, encountered the dreaded “something went wrong” message after the app was installed on my iPad and I followed the instructions on creating a new account.
Many prospective enrollees likely stopped at this point. Nevertheless, I persisted, inspired, no doubt, by Senator Elizabeth Warren’s timeless advice.
After trying again several more times, the app finally proceeded to the next step in the registration process, allowing me to identify chimneys in a standard CAPTCHA exercise and then input my email address and a numeric PIN code.
It then told me to expect an email with a link to click on to complete the registration process.
Hours later, I’m still waiting for that email to arrive.
Even among those who apparently made it up to this point and did receive their email links, actually logging onto the platform proved problematic.
Reports of subscribers receiving notices that, although their account was successfully created, they had been placed on a waitlist due to “massive demand,” assigning them a waitlist number in the hundreds of thousands.
Truth Social building in a wait list to hype demand, is like jank night clubs keeping folks waiting outside the velvet rope when almost no one is inside. . .
— Don Lewis (@DonLew87) February 21, 2022
The technical difficulties that Truth Social was experiencing did not inspire much confidence in the ability of the platform to protect user data from wily hackers, a problem that has plagued other startup social networks such as GETTR.
Congressman Ted Lieu (D-CA) questioned whether Nunes and Trump’s new service can handle the security issues involved in operating a social media network.
Many people say that if #TruthSocial can’t even handle opening new accounts, how will it keep your account from being hacked?
Also, the problems won’t be fixed until late March. So is their staff like 2 people, the failed Devin Nunes and his cousin’s friend who is the coder? https://t.co/9aZq5ywHna
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) February 21, 2022
Even GOP maverick Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) made a bold prediction that Truth Social was destined for failure, although he blamed the anticipated lack of diversity of opinion on the platform rather than technical inadequacy for the prognosis of eventual collapse.
Social media sadly thrives on conflict. #truthsocial (which is ironically named) will be boring and fail, because it will be all Trump-fed drones. BUT, please don’t come back to real social media if you left for Trump and Nunes great idea. You get your one shot. https://t.co/aOlw8m9dPp
— Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) February 21, 2022
Whatever Donald Trump and Devin Nunes hoped to accomplish with the launch of Truth Social — outside of greedily grabbing their subscribers’ monthly fees — it looks like they’ll have to resolve their problems with the basic operation of the platform first.
We’ll let you know what it’s like to be on the platform if we ever get our enrollment confirmation email back.
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Vinnie Longobardo is the Managing Editor of Occupy Democrats. He's a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music, and art.