Donald trumps Twitter to return to X

New Delhi | Updated: 25 August, 2023 10:13 am IST
Donald Trump's mugshot post as he returns to X

NEW DELHI: After more than two years of absence, former US President Donald Trump returned to X, the social media platform previously known as Twitter on Friday – capping the dramatic day with his mug shot.

In his first post on X, Trump shared a link to his website along with a photo of his mug shot taken at Atlanta jail where he was booked on more than 13 felony charges related to the 2021 US Capital riots and his bid to overturn the 2020 presidential election results.

His Twitter accounts along with his Facebook profile was banned following the riot on January 6, 2021. The caption under the mug shot read, “Never surrender!”

Trump’s comeback on X, formerly Twitter, aligns with the airing of an interview he had with Tucker Carlson, the former host of Fox News, who now streams his talk shows on the service. This interview was broadcast while other Republican presidential candidates participated in their first debate on Wednesday night.

His account was banned on the allegations that his posts glorified violence and incited his supporters to storm the Capitol. However, Musk, a self-proclaimed “free speech absolutist” who purchased the social network for $44 billion in October and renamed it X, deemed the ban a mistake. He reinstated Trump’s account in November, though it remained inactive until now.

Trump had relied on Twitter as a megaphone for years, using the platform to criticize opponents, rally his supporters, and issue policy directives. After the ban, he launched his own social network, Truth Social.

He has a financial stake in Truth Social and is required to make his posts exclusively available on the platform for six hours before sharing them on other sites, as per US media reports. However, he can immediately post to any site if the messages involve political messaging, fundraising, or get-out-the-vote initiatives.

While 86.5 million people follow him on X, his Truth Social account has just 6.5 million followers.

Trump initially indicated he wouldn’t return to Twitter after Musk’s acquisition, stating his preference for Truth Social. He even jestingly criticized Musk when the Tesla CEO contemplated backing out of the Twitter purchase, asserting in a Truth Social post that Musk had overpaid for the platform and had sought his assistance on “his many subsidized projects, whether it’s electric cars that don’t drive long enough, driverless cars that crash, or rocket ships to nowhere.”

With Musk’s ownership, X is now focusing on becoming an “everything app.”

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