Donald Trump is known for his tweets. He built his political brand on them, and enhanced that brand tenfold when talk-show hosts began to relentlessly impersonate his idiosyncratic, fractured way of tweeting. “Sad!” has practically become a meme unto itself, as Twitter funny people frequently used that exclamation to make fun of Trump, not realizing that they were usually only cementing it as a staple of pop culture.
Now, there’s evidence that Trump’s social media presence, once thought of as so unique and dumb that it had to be the president himself, sometimes isn’t even Trump. Frank Luntz noticed that Trump’s social media manager, Dan Scavino Jr., posted an identical tweet from his own account and from Trump’s:
(Scavino has since deleted the tweet from his account, and retweeted it from the president’s.)
If we didn’t have this photo, would you have guessed it was somebody else writing the tweet?Or would you have just seen Trump’s account ranting at a television network, and gone, “Ah, there he is. There’s our egomaniacal president yelling at TV stations, like he always does.”
In case you were ever curious: that specific, Trumpian way of tweeting? The one that late-night comedians thought was so hilarious before Donald Trump was actually elected president? The one that prompts people, day after day, to make jokes about how Trump cannot put the phone down and govern, how Trump is always tweeting?
Yeah, that’s a brand. It’s a specific choice by Trump’s social media team, one that the manager can replicate and pass off as Trump’s own. Keep that in mind the next time someone tries to talk to you about how Trump is “unfiltered” or “honest.”