Head of Engineering for Trump’s Truth Social App Resigns, Impacting Venture

 Head of Engineering for Trump’s Truth Social App Resigns, Impacting Venture

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File

Alex Gleason, the head of engineering for the company behind former U.S. President Donald Trump’s Truth Social app, revealed on Monday that he has resigned, dealing a significant blow to the venture. Gleason’s departure comes amidst ongoing uncertainty for Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG), which launched Truth Social to provide Trump with a means of connecting with his base after being banned from major social media platforms following the January 6, 2021, Capitol attack by his supporters.

Gleason, the founder of Soapbox Technology, specializes in providing open-source technology for “decentralized” social media platforms that operate on independently-run servers, offering an alternative to Twitter and Facebook. In an interview, Gleason disclosed that he is leaving TMTG to dedicate himself to Soapbox full-time, focusing on developing technology that facilitates the connection between multiple decentralized platforms.

TMTG hired Gleason in January 2022 to adapt Soapbox’s technology for Truth Social’s front end, the part that users interact with on the app. However, since its launch in February 2022, Truth Social has struggled to gain significant user growth. Moreover, Trump has been reinstated on widely-used platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, diminishing the app’s unique appeal to his supporters, told US News.

Currently, Truth Social has approximately 607,000 monthly users, far from the ambitious growth targets TMTG had outlined in November 2021, where they are projected to reach 56 million users by 2024 and 81 million by 2026. Trump’s following on Truth Social stands at 5.71 million, a significant difference from the 88 million followers he had on Twitter before his suspension.

TMTG’s plans to go public through a merger with Digital World Acquisition Corp (DWAC) have been jeopardized by investigations by the Justice Department and the U.S. securities regulator, leading to delays in the merger’s completion. Although DWAC reached an agreement with the Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this month, the terms are still subject to the SEC’s approval and remain tentative.

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