Trump campaign team has developed a smartphone app that aims to become a one-stop news, information and entertainment platform for his supporters
Should US President Donald Trump and Twitter ultimately part ways, his campaign has a backup plan at the ready to get his voice out.
Mr Trump responded with an executive order that threatens to curtail some legal protections enjoyed by social media companies. His campaign team has been building an alternative channel for him for months, a smartphone app that aims to become a one-stop news, information and entertainment platform for his supporters, in part because of concerns that the president would lose access to the Twitter platform, said his campaign manager, Brad Parscale.
The Trump app, which was launched in April, has since often placed among the Top 10 in Apple's rankings of news apps, sometimes above those of individual news organisations such as CNN, the New York Times and Reuters. Reward points that users can earn by getting other people to sign up for the app can be used to buy campaign gear or even score a meeting with Mr Trump himself
"We have always been worried about Twitter and Facebook taking us offline and this serves as a backup," Mr Parscale told Reuters. He spoke before Twitter for the first time prompted readers to check the facts in Mr Trump's tweets last week, warning that his claims about mail-in ballots were false and had been debunked by fact checkers.
.@Twitter is now interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election. They are saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots, which will lead to massive corruption and fraud, is incorrect, based on fact-checking by Fake News CNN and the Amazon Washington Post....
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2020 For supporters, the new app is where they can get the latest campaign news, watch campaign-produced, prime-time shows hosted by Trump allies and earn reward points for making phone calls or signing people up for the app.
For the campaign, it is a pandemic-proof substitute to Mr Trump's signature rallies, and a key tool to collect crucial data that can help micro-target voters ahead of November's election.Mr Trump will face presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in the November 3 contest.
With millions of Americans stuck at home and campaign rallies paused due to the coronavirus, successful digital organising can make a difference, digital strategists in both parties say. Signing into the app requires a cellphone number, which then allows the campaign to send the user regular text messages lauding Mr Trump or asking for donations.
"The most important, golden thing in politics is a cellphone number," said Mr Parscale, who ran Mr Trump's digital efforts in 2016 before leading the 2020 campaign."When we receive cellphone numbers, it really allows us to identify them across the databases. Who are they, voting history, everything."
Reward points that users can earn by getting other people to sign up for the app can be used to buy campaign gear or even score a meeting with Mr Trump himself, the campaign said. Digital mousetrap Mr Biden's campaign has a phone app as well, where supporters can donate or volunteer, and text people directly with campaign messaging.
But unlike Mr Trump's app, it provides little information, such as social media streams or news releases. Nor does it connect to the virtual campaign events Mr Biden has been holding nearly daily during the coronavirus pandemic. The app is not ranked by Apple as among its 200 most popular for news.
The Biden campaign said it uses its app almost solely for organising supporters, not for pushing content. By contrast, according to Stefan Smith, a Democratic digital strategist who worked for Pete Buttigieg's 2020 presidential campaign, the Trump app has created a "walled garden" or "digital mousetrap" where voters ideally stay as long as possible, interacting with the app’s steady stream of content.
"The Trump campaign is a media company with an electoral component," he said. The Trump campaign hired Texas-based company Phunware to build the app. If they so choose, users can rely on the app as a primary, if heavily filtered, information source, one where Mr Trump’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic is championed and the economy is poised for a quick recovery and the federal probe into Mr Trump's collusion with Russia was a politically motivated hoax.
Not included is less favourable coverage of the president. Yesterday, the app contained a campaign statement framed like a news article that said Mr Trump had been working to unite the county in the wake of nationwide protests over the police shooting of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
There was no mention of a combative conference call Mr Trump had with US governors in which he urged them to act more aggressively toward the protesters. Bill Bigby, a Trump supporter in Scranton, Pennsylvania, said the app has now become his go-to source for the latest news.
"We have learned that you can’t trust anything the media says about Trump," Mr Bigby, 56, said. "They just don’t like him." Mr Parscale said that was exactly the goal the campaign had in mind.Read more: RTÉ News »
That will definitely be completely unbiased..... Supporters, u mean most of USA, RTE Muppets! Yes... I really believe that this is not a propaganda prop(!) - why are you enabling him? Goebells would be proud. great news !! Sleepy Joe has the corporate media including the Irish 'Red Bubble' RTÉ is THE VIRUS.
Thanks for reporting this. I'll definitely have to download it. I'm not surprised, the media, RTE included are blatantly biased. I'll be downloading it braindamaged ........ One sided information app more like and I tought we had Fox News for that. Trump and smart in the same sentence! I don’t think so.
Unsurprising, as nearly all media in the US is left wing extremist propaganda. Twitter want to fact-check an elected President but give a free pass to Democrat Antifa domestic terrorism. GooglePlay Apple are you going to allow this? Trutter. It's Trump's alternative to Twitter In the fires of hell, Joseph Goebbels is smirking and proud as punch.
Phew, I'm sure that's super reliable. Hopefully his supporters will diminish like him. Kkk whatsapp group not good enough? Propoganda about propoganda. Shameful Fact? Mein App One-stop PROPOGANDA shop Pravda? Basically an echo chamber for sheep Definition of propaganda Disgraceful Like the left have with the BBC.
We have something similar here, its called the RTE app LisaRules Irish national broadcaster, the comments I could read all day What's the name of it I'll download it for the great man A propaganda machine I'll be having that,no more far left disorientated democratic Biden ass sniffing anti Trump news. It will be told as is,with a frown and not confused raised eyebrows!
What like north Korean TV is a one stop news for Kim Jung un? Is there a dating app part that matches you with your cousin? They can call it Fascbook Leo’s short lived strat coms unit looks very tame in comparison. Ah clever way to circumvent the truth, but those idiot magaphiles don't care about fact checking anyway so it's a waste of time, legitimate sources will just post the fact checked version online and expose the lies which they will surely be bolder with on their own platform.
Goebbels would be proud!! Dopey Donald the Bunker-Boy!!! But Fox News already has an app. Not the 1st to use propaganda eh I meet news posters Propaganda machine to keep supporters indoctrinated. hispanista What's it going to be called, the People's Observer by any chance? (look it up in the history books)
They already have that with Fox news don't they? He’s trying to controll American media to make him look good like Putin does in Russia More signs of a dictator The inability of RTE to critically cover people like Trump is downright embarrassing. If he was in power in Ireland he would have shut RTE down by now. Stand up and be counted
Alphabet Inc, owners of Google Store & the owners of Apple must not let it on their platforms, on the grounds of harmful content holy shit! so american fascism officially has an app now? trump must be getting ready to leave twitter and communicate solely through this app. (one can hope, right?) Heard his Editor in Chief's name is Goebbels or something like that...
Fucking right as main stream media is corrupt as fuck To those who think this is a poor strategy, it will damage Twitter more than him due to less traffic, whereas the site could fund part of the campaign. If you’re going to have a biased platform I think he should display it as such. I guess we’ll have to find out if it succeeds
If you have the App on your phone? The cops won’t shoot you. Oh yikes. Kim jong-trump? Twitler? So state produced Propaganda This is what the app will look like Be handy list of the people who burned the soul of the land of the free His own carefully curated and censored news platform. How very fascist of him.
🤦♂️ Class. Can't wait to download. While censoring half of it in the process. It'll be full of BS so......
Trump labels ANTIFA 'terrorists' as violence sweeps USAnother night of of violence left stores looted and cars smouldering in many US cities as President Donald Trump vowed to designate ANTIFA (short for anti-fascist) protest group as a 'terrorist organisation'. How does one join? What 'group'? It's not an organisation. Too right. They're not protesting, they're turning the whole thing violent.
'Operators need a bailout' - The tourism expert tasked with Ireland's post-Covid recoveryBy the summer of 1985, a 19-year-old Ruth Andrews was looking forward to moving to France to start a career in banking. She had just finished a short stint filing at the Fás head office on Baggot Street - 'the most boring job in the world' - and had completed a course in business, languages and marketing at a college off Grafton Street.
David McWilliams: We need to totally reimagine economics❝ These debts are being incurred to avoid deaths... the most virtuous economic initiative undertaken in our lifetimes Imagine your debt away. I like it. Helicopter money forever. McFucking Bank Guarantee
Letter to the Editor: Cost impact of recovery loans need to be examinedThe winds of change may be blowing but to the benefit of who has yet to be determined.
Trump says he will delay G7 summit to Autumn and invite other countries to joinTrump said he would like to invite Russia, South Korea, Australia and India to the group. Well he is hardly going to sit there by himself stupid man For a failure with no sense of history wouldn’t he better to listen to nations with centuries of history