Twitter Users Looking to Defect After Elon Musk Deal Have Few Options

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Elon Musk’s agreement to buy Twitter Inc. is sending some users searching for alternative platforms — with mixed success.

Elon Musk’s agreement to buy Twitter Inc. is sending some users searching for alternative platforms, with mixed success. 

Alternative social media platforms have been trending on Twitter since this morning when it was reported a deal was near, including newcomers CounterSocial and Truth Social. Even pioneering social networks like Tumblr and MySpace were floated as options to avoid a Musk-run social platform — though not very seriously. 

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CounterSocial

The ad-free social network claims to have 63.8 million monthly visitors and aims to be free of bots, trolls and deepfakes. It also promises not to sell users’ data. But as people raced to set up accounts today, the site crashed.

Users complained about the experience, or tweeted that they had joined CounterSocial but didn’t know how to use the platform. 

Little is known about CounterSocial’s origins. Its iOS and Android apps, which launched December 2020, have been downloaded fewer than 5,000 times globally, according to mobile analytics firm Apptopia. It’s currently ranked 32nd on the Apple App Store’s social network charts.

Truth Social

The social network tied to Trump is currently ranked ninth on the App Store social network charts. According to Apptopia, it has a total of 1.71 million downloads on iOS and is not yet available on Android.

Musk says he aims to make Twitter “an inclusive arena for free speech,” stoking speculation he would reinstate Trump. While Trump told Fox News on Monday that he doesn’t intend to return to Twitter, the idea he might leave Truth Social was enough to torpedo the shares of Digital World Acquisition Corp., a special purpose acquisition company aiming to merge with Truth Social owner Trump Media & Technology Group. 

DWAC shares dropped 13% at the close of trading in New York.

Mastodon

Then there’s Mastodon, a decentralized social network with 4.4 million users, according to its website

In 2017, Mastodon was heralded as a Twitter-killer when it launched. Based out of Germany, it also offers free, open-source software with the goal of allowing social networks to flourish.





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