Yesterday, Elon Musk successfully initiated his takeover of Twitter. He fired the top executives and intends to take the company private. Presumably, as a private company Elon will have more flexibility managing the company. Musk feels Twitter is over-moderated and should be more of a public forum where people can say what they like.
I don’t tweet, but I have a Twitter account I check into periodically so I’m familiar with it. Twitter definitely fills a niche. I don’t believe Twitter will go away any time soon.
But Twitter does have a problem: Namely it doesn’t make money. At least not consistently. And the buyout was leveraged, which means debt payments will be added to the expenses. On a fundamental level, Twitter needs to grow users and grow ad revenue. But all social media needs moderation or else it turns into a cess pool. I don’t think the hands off moderation like Musk is proposing will work the way it is supposed to. The other thing is that advertisers want brand safety. They don’t want their ads sandwiched in among NeoNazi hate speech.
Because Twitter will be private it will be difficult to monitor how it is doing, but this doesn’t look very smart from here.
I was watching a congressional investigation of Twitter. One Twitter exec said that they didn’t set the Covid censorship policy on their own but based on some policy guidelines. He could not name the people who crafted this policy. Why is this important?
Social media says that being private entities they are not bound by the First Amendment which is true as long as they are not obeying a government policy restricting free speech. If the policy guidelines were crafted by the government they are aiding and abetting the government in the violation of the First Amendment.
The Network Contagion Research Institute (NCRI), a group that analyzes hundreds of millions of messages across social media, said use of the n-word on the app spiked nearly 500 percent over the 12 hours after Musk’s deal was finalized.
,In other news, the trolls are back. Nazis, haters, LGBT trolls and more have come swarming back. Hate posts are staying up, can’t be too long before the list of former advertisers swells. And maybe the “free speech absolutist” will learn a lesson, but I doubt it.
General Motors is suspending advertising on Twitter following Elon Musk’s takeover of the social media platform.
Yep. Allowing (or proposing to allow) the expression of non-approved opinions is obviously the work of a neoNazi. Free speech advocates only want people to be free to agree with them.
Less sarcastically: In our laws we have established two forms of communication-oriented companies. One is “common carriers.” They exercise no control over what is communicated over them, and they have no legal responsibility for that content. An example is the phone company.
The other (the older one by a large margin) is “publishers.” The critical differentiation is that they DO exercise control over what is communicated over them - they choose both who is allowed to use them and what those people/entities are allowed to communicate. They also have legal responsibility for the content they allow.
The social-media companies are trying to have the legal status of common carriers, while controlling their content like publishers.
They may need to be a third category - traditional publishers choose what to allow BEFORE it goes public, social-media companies don’t.
But giving them all the privileges and powers of both forms is pretty clearly not a great answer.
Musk calls himself a free speech absolutist. Yet that has never worked, even US law recognized many exceptions, and for good reason.
Indeed, there are lots of people who think everything in the Constitution is “absolute”, and it’s not true. It’s never been true.
And predicting that Musk may run into trouble is somewhere near predicting that the sun will rise tomorrow. (Today he has posted a link to an article saying Pelosi’s husband was in an altercation with a male prostitute, rather than the “police approved” version, that a mentally deranged person attacked him with a hammer while shouting “Where’s Nancy?””)
Yeah, I can see the line of advertisers waiting to be part of that information flow.
Your sarcasm is misplaced. I never called or suggested Musk was a NeoNazi. I predicted major advertisers would not want to place their content next to objectionable material. So while letting Kanye West out of Twitter purgatory may be a victory for free speech, probably not a good business move.
I don’t know for certain how this plays out, but I believe my prediction is reasonable.
Let me rephrase, given you seem to have a problem with my wording. So far, GM, a competitor to Tesla, which Musk has significant power over, has pulled their advertising from Twitter, which Musk now owns and has control over. Given Musk’s unpredictable mouth, and his status as competitor to GM, why on earth would they support him financially by advertising on Twitter? Have any other advertisers, who do not have the competition complicating factor, pulled their ads, or is this more about competitors not wanting to financially support an opponent than Musk’s mouth?
Depends how much the customers of GM like to use Twitter to communicate with the business. Companies want to use the media their customers want to use. If Twitter was a worthwhile source of customers (based on GM’s advertising on Twitter), then there is no reason to change. However, Musk has stated he wants to make Twitter an essentially “free speech” zone. That could change who uses Twitter. Thus, it is both reasonable AND rational for significant advertisers on Twitter to see how the as-yet unknown changes impact the membership/participation on Twitter.
Twitter is not so profitable because as the platform was set up it does not help marketers.
Businesses carpet social media anyway with their company profiles.
The main unspoken thing people in this country wont put up with bigotry and misogyny. We are leaving Twitter. We are leaving Tesla. GM and F have EV to offer. Either one of them will be better than buying a Tesla in my book.
To Elon Musk, “frankly my dear I don’t give a damn”.