Frank (social network)

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Frank
Type of businessPrivate
Type of site
Social networking service
Available inEnglish
Founder(s)Mike Lindell
IndustryInternet
Websitefrankspeech.com

Frank is an American social networking service that launched on April 19, 2021. The site is developed by MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell and bears the tagline "the voice of free speech." It is positioned as an alt-tech service appealing to users deplatformed or dissatisfied with other social media. Lindell has described Frank, which he has reportedly spent millions of dollars developing, as "kind of like a YouTube-Twitter combination."[1]

History[edit]

Lindell announced plans to launch Frank in early March 2021 after having worked on it for four years.[2] The site was originally called "Vocl" and had the domain Vocl.com, but after a threat from Creatd which owns a web site called "Vocal," Lindell changed the name to "Frank."[3][4]

Lindell, a vocal backer of former U.S. President Donald Trump, has stated that criticism of Trump will be permitted on Frank.[5] The service will not permit swearing, pornography, and death threats. Specifically, Lindell in a video banned "the c-word, the n-word, the f-word, or God's name in vain."[2]

Registration for early "VIP" access to Frank launched on April 14, 2021,[2] although many registrants reported that they were not invited in at midnight that evening as advertised.[6] On April 17, Lindell announced VIP access was delayed until April 18 and that the site would launch widely at 8:00 AM CDT (13:00 UTC) on April 19.[7]

Frank launched its VIP access site on April 19 after a lengthy outage attributed by Lindell on Parler to a "massive attack".[8] The site showed a promised 48-hour "Frankathon" livestream of Lindell and guests.[9] Topics included MyPillow's countersuit against Dominion Voting Systems for $1.6 billion with Alan Dershowitz representing MyPillow.[10][11]

On April 22, three days after its launch, Frank had no available social networking features.[12] Its previously available content was replaced with two embedded video streams: a replay of the 48-hour Frankathon launch stream and Absolute Interference, a two-hour video promoting conspiracy theories about the 2020 Presidential election.[13][14][15]

Response[edit]

To guard against deplatforming by app stores, Frank is only available as a web application in mobile web browsers.[16]

Frank plans to include an online marketplace called MyStore as "a rival to Amazon," expanding upon the marketplace on the MyPillow web site.[17] Andrew Torba, CEO of alt-tech social media service Gab, alleged that Lindell stole Gab's idea for an online marketplace and criticized Lindell for "blatantly rip[ping] off our free speech platform vision as his own."[18]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. Dean, Grace (April 14, 2021). "Mike Lindell has launched VIP access to his social-media site Frank, which he says will bar swearing, porn, and death threats". Insider. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Dean, Grace (April 12, 2021). "MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell's social-media site Frank is now set to launch on April 20". Insider. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  3. "Mike Lindell New Social Platform VOCL Facing Lawsuit Threat". Mediaite. March 12, 2021. Retrieved March 19, 2021.
  4. Suebsaeng, Will Sommer,Asawin (March 12, 2021). "MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell Is Trying To Launch a Social Media Site, and It's Already Resulted in a Legal Threat". The Daily Beast. Retrieved March 19, 2021.
  5. Murdock, Jason (April 15, 2021). "Mike Lindell Says Criticism of Donald Trump Allowed on 'Free Speech' Site Frank". Newsweek. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  6. Murdock, Jason (April 16, 2021). "Mike Lindell's Fans Confused as Frank Social Media Site Fails to Launch". Newsweek. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  7. Dean, Grace (April 17, 2021). "Mike Lindell's social-media site Frank was supposed to launch for VIP access on Thursday night. It still hasn't". Insider. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
  8. Murdock, Jason (April 19, 2021). "Mike Lindell's Platform Frank Fails to Launch Again, 'Massive Attack' Blamed". Newsweek. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  9. Dailey, Natasha; Dean, Grace. "Mike Lindell's social media site Frank was supposed to launch Monday morning, but errors are making it impossible to access". Insider. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  10. Corse, Alexa (April 19, 2021). "MyPillow Sues Dominion Voting Systems in Federal Court in Minnesota". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  11. Woodward, Alex (April 19, 2021). "Mike Lindell says he's suing Dominion for $1.6 billion". The Independent. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  12. Gonzalez, Oscar. "MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell's social media platform is up...kind of". CNET. Retrieved 2021-04-23.
  13. Gonzalez, Oscar (April 21, 2021). "MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell's social media platform is still down". Cnet. Retrieved 21 April 2021.
  14. Smith, Adam (April 22, 2021). "Frank: MyPillow CEO's pro-Trump social network breaks immediately upon launch". The Independent. Retrieved 22 April 2021.
  15. Murdock, Jason (April 22, 2021). "Mike Lindell's Site Frank Goes Down Days After Launch, Dubbed 'Epic Success'". Newsweek. Retrieved 22 April 2021.
  16. Brandom, Russell (April 14, 2021). "MyPillow CEO's free speech social network will ban posts that take the Lord's name in vain". The Verge. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  17. Zhao, Christina (April 12, 2021). "MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell Announces He's Launching 'MyStore,' a Patriotic Rival to Amazon". Newsweek. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  18. Murdock, Jason (April 14, 2021). "Mike Lindell's Frank 'Free Speech' Site Labeled 'Rip Off' by Gab CEO Andrew Torba". Newsweek. Retrieved 16 April 2021.


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