Truth Social, the Trumpian Twitter alternative for the alt-right, has had a rough go of it since launching earlier this year. The app, which is still yet to launch on Android devices, has been inundated with outages, technical glitches and poor customer relations pretty much since the start. Users have reported being banned from the platform for simply talking about certain topics, such as the January 6th hearings, despite the platform’s purported goal of encouraging “open, free and honest global conversation.”
The circumstances, along with its association with the former president, have kept wide adoption of the platform a pipedream. But now, Donald Trump and a collection of allies appear to be doing their best to separate themselves from the platform’s parent company, Trump Media and Technology Group, as it potentially faces multiple criminal investigations.
According to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Trump removed himself as chairman of TMTG’s board of directors last month, just three weeks before the company was served federal subpoenas from the Securities and Exchange Commission and a grand jury in the Southern District of New York.
Donald Trump Jr., former Devin Nunes aide and Trump administration official Kashyap Patel, former The Apprentice contestant Wes Moss and former Trump Homeland Security official Scott Glabe were also among those removed from the board in early June.
The investigations that produced the subpoenas are reportedly related to TMTG’s pending merger with Digital World Acquisition Corp, a deal that would take Trump’s media company public and flush it with upwards of $1 billion. This is possible due to DWAC’s designation as a special purpose acquisition company, commonly referred to as a SPAC. Such companies are founded to raise money toward a public filing with the sole purpose of merging with another company.
This creates an easier route for companies to land on the New York Stock Exchange, but current regulations prohibit SPACs from committing to a merger with another company before going public. The subpoenas served to TMTG are seeking information relating to “Digital World and other potential counterparties for a business transaction involving TMTG.” DWAC received similar subpoenas on June 13, five days after Trump and others exited the TMTG board.
The Sarasota Herald-Tribune also noted that the Sarasota, Fla. address where TMTG is registered bears no mention of Trump or his media company’s name. That’s odd for a man whose recent business dealings centered around himself and licensing his name to various companies (TMTG also licenses Trump’s name). The office comically had a sign directing visitors to “ring the doorbell for assistance” in lieu of a receptionist.
Despite government filings showing that Trump is no longer on TMTG’s board, Truth Social issued a denial on its website calling the news, what else, “fake news.”