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Tag: trump blog

How Trump Became An Online Flop In 2021

Reprinted with permission from Press Run

After less than a month of postings, Trump's blog was officially taken offline last week, after drawing an embarrassingly small audience. Loyalists will no longer be able to check on "From the Desk of Donald J. Trump" to read his latest, bitter musings.

The sudden move to unplug the aging Florida blogger came as Trump continues to struggle to attract an online audience after getting de-platformed by Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram in the wake of the January 6 mob attack on the U.S. Capitol. The social media giants rightly accused Trump of inciting violence and of depicting the mob vigilantes as patriots. Once accustomed to seeing his tweets and Facebook posts garnering millions of likes and responses, Trump now finds himself lost in the online wilderness, ignored and rejected.

NBC News last week reported that Trump's blog had "attracted a little over 212,000 engagements," a shockingly small number for someone of his political status. By comparison, when Trump got banned for life from Twitter, he had 88 million followers.

While Trump is widely seen as the odds on favorite to win the 2024 Republican nomination if he decides to run again, competing in a general election campaign with virtually no online presence could pose a major problem for the him.

Although there had been chatter about Trump launching an ambitious media play in his post-presidency years, he's always been lazy. Which is why the idea that he'd undertake the Herculean task of building a social media outpost from nothing always seemed farfetched. To date, it's clear he's taken a haphazard approach to his website.

The Washington Post reported that Trump's blog was taken down because he was upset that people were making fun of its paltry audience. Going back to his days at The Apprentice,Trump has always used ratings as a way to judge a person's worth. One of his favorite putdowns as president was to claim that a particular news network had bad ratings, which means his dismal showing online this year no doubt stings. Especially after his flak Jason Miller had hyped the site as "the hottest ticket in social media, it's going to completely redefine the game."

Why the online collapse this year? Aside from Trump's hibernation down at Mar-a-Lago, he's clearly been unable to reproduce the buzz that his tweets, and to a degree his Facebook posts, generated. Reveling in Twitter's rapid-fire insult style, Trump became a social media star by making news and announcing controversial government policy online. By comparison, his dreary, boring blog posts generated yawns. His namesake site is also seen as being primitive by 2021 standards, and included no comment section for Trump's blog postings.

The site's audience collapse in the last 12 months has been astonishing. "Data provided by right-wing website monitor The Righting revealed that last April, pulled in 14.4 million unique visitors. Last month, it garnered a mere 161,000," The Wrap recently reported.

It hasn't just been his colossal flop as a blogger. All across the internet, references to Trump have plummeted, even as Republican leaders scramble to placate him.

"Chatter about Trump has fallen across the biggest social media sites to its lowest level since May 2016, when he was just becoming the GOP's presumptive presidential nominee, according to the BuzzSumo data," the Post reported. "On Twitter, data from the online-analytics firm Zignal Labs shows, mentions of him have cratered to an average of about 4 million a week, the lowest since 2016."

The bad online news comes after Trump's recent one-hour sit-down with Steve Cortes and Jenn Pellegrino on NewsMax on May 25 drew just 295,000 viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research data — and just 62,000 viewers in the advertiser-coveted age demographic of 25 to 54. That same night during the 9 p.m. time slot when Trump appeared on NewsMax, his interview got beat badly in the ratings by Chopped, and by HGTV's Unsellable Houses, which pulled 1.3 million total viewers, or nearly four times the Trump audience.

For years, the media loved to portray Trump as a cultural phenomenon who produces bonanza ratings. Of course, Trump pushed that media myth himself. He once claimed that when he appeared on Fox News Sunday in November 2018, the show landed nine million viewers. In truth, 1.7 million people tuned in. The truth is, he often produces shoulder shrugs.

Trump's convention acceptance speech last year was the lowest-rated one in primetime history. The summer before, ABC News aired a primetime Trump special, built around the idea of tagging along with him for 30 hours inside the White House. The special flopped, coming in third place among the three major networks on Sunday at 8 PM ET. Worse, the show produced just half the television audience that ABC's Celebrity Family Feud had attracted in the same time slot one week earlier.

The dichotomy now at play is an amazing one: As Trump fades from public view and generates so little interest online, the Republican Party continues to genuflect in front of him.

Oh Dear: Trump’s Moribund Blog Is Officially Dead

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos

Back in January, Donald Trump was permanently banned from Twitter after he doubled down on the lies that generated the violence on January 6 by both continuing those lies and praising the insurgents. Facebook has since continued Trump's temporary suspension "indefinitely." Soon after, stories began to circulate that Trump was either going to buy out an existing social media platform (presumably using the funds of those still sending him checks to "stop the steal") or launch his own.

By March, Trump assistant Jason Miller popped up on Fox News to say that Trump was returning to social media with his own platform. "This is something that I think will be the hottest ticket in social media," said Miller. "It's going to completely redefine the game, and everybody is going to be waiting and watching to see what exactly President Trump does. But it will be his own platform."

Earlier this month, Trump did in fact launch a platform that redefined the game. He redefined it in terms of a pre-2000 blog that allowed only Trump to post and no one else to comment. That's not to say that "From the Desk of Donald J. Trump" didn't have at least one innovative feature—it contained a like button that, once turned on, could never be turned off. It was perfect. Except for one thing: No one was showing up to read it.

For a mere three weeks, Trump's blog existed as a pure demonstration of his growing irrelevance. But this morning, CNBC reported that Jason Miller was back with the next exciting update: Trump's blog has been scrubbed from his site. And it's not coming back.

As Jessica Sutherland noted on May 22, while Trump's erratic posts on his "desk" blog were dutifully picked up by the right-wing media, it's not as if anyone else was hovering around waiting for the off chance that he might speak. That put Trump's new site way down the list of most visited websites. Like … down below sites seeking to place pets from shelters and well below sites that teach people to properly grill steak (without ketchup).

Mostly, Trump's blog site seemed to exist as an example of his lack of a team capable of genuine technical work, and as an example of how his ego allowed him to believe that a site posting occasional statements from a single person—most of them exactly the sort of nonsense that he used to deliver via tweet—could remain somehow relevant.

Still, Miller isn't ruling out a return to social media for Trump, though he does "not have a precise awareness of timing."

Honestly, Trump should be able to create an alternative to conservative sites like Parler for the cost of a couple of Python programmers and a rented server. It's not as if those sites are doing anything that represents a great technical challenge. The only challenge will be Trump agreeing to be on a platform where the only voice isn't his voice.

But if Trump does create a new site, you can bet it will have some pretty simple community guidelines.

Twitter Trashes Trump’s New ‘Dollar Store Twitter’ Blog

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Donald Trump, the former president, on Tuesday launched what Fox News called a new "platform," but in reality, as many are saying, is just a blog. It even sounds like what blogs were called in the early days of the medium: From the Desk of Donald J. Trump.

The site is part of his main site, which is now designed as a money-making/fundraising enterprise. It allows one-way communication, with Trump posting words, images, or video, and then supporters can tweet them or post them to Facebook. The "like" button does not currently work.

Many on social media mocked the former president.