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This article was published on January 13, 2021


After Parler’s troubles, Donald Trump Jr. wants Elon Musk to build a social network

After Parler’s troubles, Donald Trump Jr. wants Elon Musk to build a social network
Ivan Mehta
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Ivan Mehta

Ivan covers Big Tech, India, policy, AI, security, platforms, and apps for TNW. That's one heck of a mixed bag. He likes to say "Bleh." Ivan covers Big Tech, India, policy, AI, security, platforms, and apps for TNW. That's one heck of a mixed bag. He likes to say "Bleh."

After big tech firms, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Twitch, and YouTube, banned Donald Trump, the outgoing president and his supporters flocked Parler, a social network favored by the alt-right.

However, that network ran into all sorts of trouble because of content that can potentially incite violence. Amazon Web Services booted it off its cloud infrastructure, and Apple and Google removed the app from the App Store. Now that the social network and its CEO are offline for now, Trump supporters are looking for a new home.

So in a bizarre move, Donald Trump Jr. has called for the world’s richest man, Elon Musk, to create a new social network. In an Instagram video, he said, “If Elon musk can privately send people into space, I’m sure he can design a social network that isn’t biased.” 

Trump Jr. added that Musk could out-do Twitter and create a social network that takes care of hate speech and calls of violence with “actual neutral arbiters and fact-checkers.”

Earlier this week, Musk called out Trump’s social network ban and said a lot of people might not agree to have “West Coast high tech as the de facto arbiter of free speech.” However, the billionaire has not expressed any intention of building a social network just yet.

It’s important to keep in mind that Musk’s own social media record is not so rosy. He called a British diver working in Thailand a “pedo guy,” and caused Tesla shares to dive after he tweeted that their prices are too high.

What’s more, Trump Jr.’s call feels more like “Oh, you know computers? Why don’t you build a social network for us,” and not a solid plan. I’m not holding my breath for Musk to announce a social network for now.

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