Donald Trump hired a tech firm to help him moderate his new social-media site.
The company, Hive, uses AI to scan platforms for banned content on the site, Truth Social.
It undermines Trump's attempts to market it as a free-speech centric platform free of Big Tech.
Former President Donald Trump billed his yet-to-be launched social media site, Truth Social, as a free speech alternative to what he has claimed is the liberal censorship enforced by Big Tech.
But it seems the site will have its own restrictions on what can users can post, and enforced by a tech firm building AI in San Francisco.
Fox Business reported on Monday that Truth Social would be moderated by Hive, a company that scans sites for banned content using AI.
The company's CEO, Kevin Guo, told Fox that Hive would police the site for sexually-explicit content, and posts that include violence, bullying, hate speech, and spam.
Guo argued that his company's moderation would not encroach on politics, the charge that Trump and his allies have leveled at the likes of Facebook and Twitter.
"This is not political," Guo said. "These are not things that are left or right or have any political baggage. When you think about these bigger companies, what they have put in place around things like misinformation, what they deem that to be, for instance, that's their prerogative."
Guo was referring to the policies on sites like Twitter and Facebook banning the promotion of disinformation and misinformation that Trump and several his allies have fallen foul of, leading to them being evicted from the platforms.
Devin Nunes, who resigned from the House of Representatives to head the new site, told Fox Business that "we want to be very family-friendly, we want this to be a very safe place."
He said that while Truth Social had a moderation policy, it would not be restricting political speech.
"We're not going to censor anybody because they have a different opinion about, for example, a COVID vaccine," Nunes said.
"That is what the open internet is all about — it should be for the free flow of debate and ideas all over the globe, so that people can learn from one another and debate with one another."
Trump has in the past been accused of exactly the behavior his platform is seeking to ban. Critics say Trump used his platforms to bully and insult opponents, and push racist propaganda.
Twitter and Facebook banned Trump from their platforms in the wake of the Jan 6 riot, citing their policies on encouraging violence rather than giving an explicit political motive.
He has struggled since to regain a foothold on mainstream platforms. The former president has in the past attributed his rise to power on his ability to talk directly to supporters on social media, bypassing negative coverage by news organisations.
A blog he launched in 2021 to post statements was a flop, and closed after a few weeks.
After announcing Truth Social's planned launch back in October, the rollout of the site has been shaky. Hackers gained access to an early version of the site and posted spoof and parody content using accounts under Trump's name.
The use of a moderation policy appears to be an attempt to avoid the fate of other "free speech" apps, like Gab or Telegram, which have becomes flooded by extremist and other illicit content.
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