Trump’s social network has already violated its software license

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Truth Social, the so-called anti-Big Tech and pro-free speech social media platform launched by Donald Trump, has already gone dark. It is not because of the pirates either. This is because the former president’s company allegedly violated the terms of its software contract.

The Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC) calls out former President Trump’s new social media network, claiming the company violated the rules of a free and open source software license agreement, The edge reported on Friday. The SFC, a non-profit organization that enforces this type of license, has given the network 30 days to comply with the terms or it will lose all rights to use the software.

According to Bradley M. Kuhn, software developer and policy specialist at SFC, the Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG) broke the license agreement for an open source software platform called Mastodon when it launched “a se – saying “test site” “for its Truth Social Product, which was built using Mastodon software. Although any company can use the Mastodon code, according to the license agreement (AGPLv3), each user of the software must be given “the opportunity to receive the entire corresponding source for the website on the basis of this code ”. According to Kuhn, early Truth Social users did not get the source code and TMTG “is currently ignoring their very public requests about it.”

“Today we saw the Trump Media and Technology Group ignore these important rules – which were designed for social good,” Bradley M. Kuhn wrote on SFC blog Thusday. “Once caught in the act, Trump’s Group rushed in and destroyed the site.”

If TMTG does not make the corresponding source available to every user who has logged in to the site during its brief period of availability, Kuhn said, “their rights and permissions in the software are automatically and permanently terminated.”

“This is how AGPLv3’s healing provision works – bar none – even if you’re a real estate mogul, reality TV star, or even a former POTUS,” he wrote.

Trump launched Truth Social with TMTG on Wednesday to compete with Big Tech social media networks which banned him from their services when he incited violence on Jan.6. The network is believed to be “a rival to the liberal media consortium and retaliate against ‘Big Tech’ companies in Silicon Valley, which have used their one-sided power to silence opposing voices in America,” the company said in a statement. According to The Verge, the developers at Truth Social tried to hide the obvious signs that they were using the Mastodon software, and TMTG even called the service “proprietary,” but it is clear in the HTML coding and appearance of the site. that it uses the open source code of Mastodon.

Even though Truth Social was still live, this news would likely not be allowed on the site. The terms of use of the platform state that users are not permitted to “disparage, tarnish or harm in any way, in our opinion, us and / or the site”.


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