While the top candidates in the 2024 presidential race have yet to appear on Threads, Instagram’s new app aimed at competing with Twitter, many of the long-shot candidates have been quick to tap into the platform’s rapidly growing audience.
“Buckle up and join me on Threads!” Sen. Tim Scott, a South Carolina Republican, wrote in a caption accompanying a selfie of himself and others in a car he posted Thursday: By morning, the app had already been downloaded more than 30 million times. , which was on track to be the most downloaded application in history.
But President Biden, former President Donald J. Trump and Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida remain absent from the platform so far.
And that may be just fine for Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, who said Thursday on The Times’ “Hard Fork” podcast that he doesn’t expect Threads to become a destination for news or politics, arenas where Twitter has dominated discourse. public.
“I don’t want to lean on hard news at all. I don’t think there’s much we can or should do to discourage it on Instagram or on Threads, but I don’t think we do anything to encourage it,” Mosseri said.
The app, launched on Wednesday, was billed as an alternative to Twitter, which many users became disillusioned with after Elon Musk bought it in October.
Twitter lawyers have threatened legal action against Meta, the company that owns Instagram, Facebook and Threads, accusing it of using trade secrets of former Twitter employees to build the new platform. mr musk he tweeted on thursday“Competition is fine, cheating is not.”
Trump has also not been active on Twitter recently, despite Musk lifting the ban placed on Trump’s account after the January 6, 2021 attack on Capitol Hill. Instead, the former president kept his focus on Truth Social, the right-wing social network that launched in 2021.
But many of the Republican candidates have started making their pitches on Threads.
Nikki Haley, a former United Nations ambassador and former governor of South Carolina, made a video compilation of her campaign events as her first post on the app. “Strong and proud. Not weak and awake,” she wrote on Thursday. “That’s the America I see.”
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum posted footage of his Fourth of July campaign appearances in New Hampshire, along with a message Wednesday that he and his wife were “looking forward to continuing our time here.”
And Will Hurd, a former congressman from Texas, gave a fundraising speech to viewers on Wednesday.
“Welcome to Threads,” he said in a video posted on the app. “I look forward to continuing the conversation here with you about the issues, my candidacy, where I will be and everything that is happening in our campaign.”
Francis Suarez, the Republican mayor of Miami, and Larry Elder, a conservative radio host, also shared their campaign speeches on the platform, as did two candidates running in the Democratic primary: Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a noted vaccine skeptic, and Marianne Williamson, self-help author. Even Cornel West, a professor and progressive activist running as a third-party candidate, has posted.
Former Vice President Mike Pence and Vivek Ramaswamy, a tech entrepreneur, have also established accounts, but have yet to publish them.
Among the holdouts: former Gov. Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas and former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, both Republicans.
The White House has not said whether Biden will join Threads. Andrew Bates, a White House spokesman, said Thursday that the administration would “keep you informed if we do.”