USA: Former President Donald Trump has posted on his Truth Social account signaling his return to social media.
“I’M BACK! #COVFEFE,” Trump wrote on the platform, which he founded and is owned by Trump Media & Technology Group.
In the same post, he also shared a photo of himself appearing to use a phone while standing in front of his Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida.
It comes after Trump said in February that people should “get ready” and your favorite president will see you soon!”
The hashtag “covfefe” refers to a term Trump first posted in May 2017 on Twitter that said, “Despite the negative press covfefe.” It received over 122,000 shares and 155,000 likes before being deleted. Trump never corrected the spelling of “covfefe” nor explained what the term meant, and even wrote the next day, “Who can figure out the true meaning of “covfefe” ??? Enjoy!”
The term remains open to interpretation. Some say it refers to the name of a bill introduced in June 2017 by Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Ill.)—the Communications Over Various Feeds Electronically for Engagement (COVFEFE) Act of 2017—which would permanently archive all of a president’s official and personal social media posts, including Twitter posts, while in office. The bill did not pass.
Trump’s first Truth Social post comes after Twitter announced on April 25 that its board accepted Elon Musk’s offer to purchase the company and make it private in an offer valued at about $44 billion.
The former president told Fox News on Monday he would not come back to Twitter and would stay on his own Truth Social platform going forward. The company’s CEO is former Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.).
Truth Social was launched on President’s Day Feb. 21, 2022, on Apple’s App Store.
After over a million users spent weeks on a waitlist, the app switched to Rumble’s cloud services on April 22 in a move the company said would enable it to “scale significantly.” Days later, on April 26, the Truth Social app rose to No. 1 on the Apple App Store downloads list.
An Android app for Truth Social is “coming soon” to the Google Play Store, according to the company.
Twitter banned Trump’s account, as well as his campaign’s account, while he was still president in 2021, two days after the Jan. 6, 2021, breach of the U.S. Capitol building. Twitter said it permanently banned Trump’s account “due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” citing two posts he made in the aftermath of Jan. 6.
The two posts did not allude to or directly call for any violence, but Twitter said that they were “highly likely to encourage and inspire people to replicate the criminal acts that took place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.”
Trump had called for peace at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, and told Capitol protesters to leave the area.
Facebook also banned Trump later. The company put the ban effective for two years after its independent court ruled that having an “indefinite” suspension from the platform was not permissible.
Update: This article has been updated with further details on the term “covfefe.”
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