GETTR, the new social media platform from the brilliant minds employed by our loser ex-president Donald Trump, has a lot of problems.
It’s a Twitter clone riddled with slapdash, half-completed features, and cringe-inducing security flaws. It’s bankrolled by a fugitive Chinese billionaire who was recently highlighted as the center of a massive misinformation network and promotes the site with cringeworthy ads. Much of its content that isn’t suspiciously sycophantic about said billionaire is quite literally stolen and reuploaded from Twitter. It goes out of its way in its terms of service to emphasize it does not take responsibility for monitoring user-generated content, “even after receiving notice.” Trump reportedly is steering far clear of any involvement whatsoever. And it’s barely moderated and filled with porn.
To be more specific, very niche porn, like furries and hentai (a quick refresher on what that is here), as well as non-pornographic but NSFW content like stock photos of old men wearing nothing but diapers. Motherboard reports that members of the QAnon movement, the rabidly pro-Donald Trump conspiracy theory that asserts Democrats and Hollywood are cannibal pedophiles that run a global sex-trafficking Satanic cult, initially flocked to the app in large numbers but are already starting to get pissed off thanks to all the moral degradation on display. They’re also mad Team Trump isn’t working overtime to ban other users who flood conspiracy-themed hashtags with mockery and curse-filled shitposts.
While GETTR writes in its rules it has the right to intervene against content “we believe is … pornographic” or “offensive, obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy… violent, harassing, threatening, abusive, illegal, or otherwise objectionable or inappropriate.” Yet it doesn’t appear to be willing or able to moderate content, especially since longtime Trump adviser Jason Miller announced that GETTR was the “next-generation” social media project he’s been teasing for weeks. As of Friday morning, Gizmodo found that GETTR’s search function on desktop appeared to be either extremely limited in functionality or broken, but these were among the less explicit results for “QAnon.” (For context, one image we didn’t include was the cover of a hentai doujin called “My President Is a Fucking Trap And Fake News Are Making Him Look Ugly,” featuring a drawing of a young person with a Trump-like haircut, a suit top, and very little underneath.)
As Mother Jones noted, users were spamming hentai and other pornographic images in the replies to the introductory post on GETTR that pops up as the first thing presented to owners of newly signed up accounts.
According to Motherboard, several prominent QAnon and conspiracy channels on messaging app Telegram weighed in with disgust.
“Seems like vapor,” the popular QAnon “We the Media” channel wrote. “Slow to delete shill porn. Big names denying Trump wants anything to do with it. Alienating liberals by defining itself as a conservative echo chamber. Another fart in the wind.”
In another post, We the Media wrote “Imagine this headline / Trump opens new hotel , its in beta so sorry for the kinks / Ya no.” They angrily added their username had already been taken but “not by any of us” and “Shill, porn, racism, LGB hate in the name of Q and Trump being portrayed. Ya no.”
Jordan Sather, a QAnon promoter and self-declared alternative medicine expert who has advocated drinking bleach to cure the novel coronavirus, wrote “Shills are already hitting the #QAnon hashtag on GETTR hard. I won’t repost what I’m finding. Titties and bad words and stuff.”
Additionally, Motherboard reported that numerous individuals in QAnon or the pro-Trump movement already had their accounts taken by unaffiliated users, likely for the purposes of trolling. For example, QAnon conference organizer John Sabal confirmed to the site that former national security adviser Michael Flynn (who has since dove headfirst into the shallow waters of QAnon and recently advocated a Myanmar-style coup to return Trump to power) and former Trump campaign attorney Sidney Powell were not behind GETTR accounts bearing their names.
Ever since Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and virtually every other mainstream platform banned Trump earlier this year after he instigated seditious riots at the Capitol which resulted in multiple deaths, the twice-impeached ex-president has been searching for a new social media home. He started his own blog, titled From the Desk of Donald J. Trump, but quickly abandoned it after it drew only pathetic pageviews and was roundly mocked by much of the media. Trump had reportedly considered joining far-right site Parler under the handle “Person X” throughout 2020, with Parler even reportedly going so far as to offer him equity. After the 2021 bans, speculation he would finally join Parler spiked, but hopes for that appeared to be nixed when Parler went down for weeks after Amazon, Apple, and Google severed ties with it thanks to widespread death threats on the site and its users’ involvement in the riots. He reportedly had to be talked out of joining neo-Nazi haven Gab. Other options that have been floated in the media, such as little-known sites like Clouthub and Freespace, are just embarrassing.
It’s bog-standard for political aides to try to cash in on their connections after exiting government or campaign employment, which appears to be the entire reason GETTR is getting any attention at all. When Miller departed formal full-time employment with Trump in the past few weeks to focus on the site, sources teased media outlets that the ex-president was considering joining. Miller himself told Fox News in March that Trump would register for “something that I think will be the hottest ticket in social media” that is going to “completely redefine the game” within two or three months.
According to Bloomberg, Trump apparently hasn’t deemed such a move to be worth his time, and it seems unlikely he’s going to change his mind now that the full extent of the GETTR clusterfuck is becoming obvious to everyone. Instead, he recently joined Rumble, a site that used to serve as a clearinghouse for licensing viral videos, but has since pivoted to serving as a hub for right-wing outrage bait like conservative podcasters and clips from the news re-uploaded with angry captions.
GETTR seems destined for the trash heap alongside all the other disastrously failed attempts to launch free speech-themed social destinations for MAGA revanchists. It’d certainly be a shame if its demise was hastened by even more pornography. But even though it takes just seconds to sign up for GETTR and no one appears to be doing anything to stop anyone at all from doing so, we of course would never suggest that you do that.