Online trolls got a pro-DeSantis hashtag trending on Truth Social to make Donald Trump mad. Within hours, the site went offline, Vice News first reported.
This week, a trio of friends who are also behind the viral Birds Aren’t Real movement, Ari Cagan, Adam Faze, and Peter McIndoe, decided to play a prank that “would really piss off Trump,” Cagan tweeted on Tuesday. He said that the friends had downloaded Trump’s bootleg Twitter platform to see what he was saying about his impending indictment, but noticed that the trending topics on the social networking app weren’t that trendy.
“We realized the top trending topics only had 100 people talking about them,” he said. So, they went to Trump Tower, recorded a TikTok, and posted it on McIndoe’s account.
“We can take over Trump’s app, Truth Social, right now,” McIndoe said in the video. “[…] if only a hundred of us make accounts and post with a new hashtag, it will literally be trending and Trump will see it.”
The hashtag they chose? #DeSantis2024.
“Ron DeSantis, for those who don’t know, is his biggest enemy and his main challenger for 2024,” McIndoe told his audience. “Truth Social is Trump’s app and if he thinks his own base is turning against him on the day of his arrest and switching teams, I think he would actually lose his mind.”
@petermcindoejr It wouod only take 100 of us to make soemthing trend, making an account is super easy #TruthSocial #trumparrest #trump ♬ original sound – Peter McIndoe Jr.
#DeSantis2024 popped up on the site’s trending page within hours, rocketing to the top slot by 4 P.M. Tuesday. The TikTok video has amassed over a million views in two days.
Then the site went offline temporarily, Vice News reported. One user claimed that his account, which was dormant before he took part in the hashtag, was banned by Wednesday morning. Still, #DeSantis2024 continued to trend throughout Wednesday, alongside “#ResearchBirdSurveillance,” a nod to another of McIndoe’s pranks.
McIndoe is experienced in this kind of online chicanery: In 2017, he launched “Birds Aren’t Real”, a satirical movement arguing that the birds you see flying around are actually government surveillance drones.
“So it’s taking this concept of misinformation and almost building a safe space to come together within it and laugh at it, rather than be scared by it,” he told 60 Minutes last year. “And accept the lunacy of it all and be a bird truther for a moment in time when everything’s so crazy.”
There’s a good chance Trump saw the trend. He’s been posting to the site frequently ever since he told his supporters last weekend that he was going to be arrested by the Manhattan District Attorney on Tuesday. That didn’t come to pass, but he hasn’t stopped posting about the impending indictment in addition to attacks on his potential 2024 challenger.
Even as I wrote the last paragraph, he posted a(nother) screed against “Ron DeSanctimonious:” “Ron’s Poll Numbers are ‘crashing’ at a record pace, he is being abandoned by his most ‘loyal’ people, and I’m sure he’s planning to ask for all of his money back from his Establishment RINO Advisors who are good at one thing, sucking the piggy bank dry!”