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Elon Musk Owns Twitter Now –> What’s Next? | $8 Verification Service floated

CBC News | Oct 27, 2022

E.M. Impact - Elon Musk Owns Twitter Now --> What's Next? | $8 Verification Service floated

Image: Manu Cornet

Dismissal of company's CEO, CFO among his first moves and what happens next is anyone's guess

  • Leadership fired:  Elon Musk completed his $44-billion US acquisition of Twitter late on Thursday.  Within hours, he had fired CEO Parag Agrawal, head of legal Vijaya Gadde, chief financial officer Ned Segal and others. Agrawal and Segal were in Twitter's San Francisco headquarters when the deal closed and were escorted out of the building.  Reports suggest Musk has installed himself as CEO, but he has yet to confirm that.
  • Stock to be delisted although there is speculation that Musk plans to eventually resell the company one day and make it public again.

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  • "Employees are already worried about massive layoffs."A report this week suggested he planned to fire three quarters of the company's 7,500 staff.
  • In an open letter to users and advertisers Thursday, Musk said he bought the company because "it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence.  But Twitter obviously cannot become a free-for-all hellscape, where anything can be said without consequences".

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Vox |

Musk has tweeted a lot of ideas about how he plans to change Twitter. Here are some of the most significant ones.

  • Musk-Twitter Saga just getting started: After more than six months of one of the most chaotic, high-profile business negotiations in recent memory, it’s finally real: Elon Musk, the richest person in the world, is in charge of Twitter.  Twitter won’t have to wait in limbo any longer as an orphaned tech company pleading for someone to take ownership. It also won’t have to deal with Musk’s public shitposting directed at the company’s leadership. (Musk tweeting a poop emoji at Agrawal may go down as one of the most juvenile executive insults of all time.)

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  • Business challenge: how to effectively run a social media platform that’s used by nearly 400 million people — including highly influential world leaders, journalists, and other public figures — and deal with the political speech moderation issues that come with that. Musk also needs to figure out a better business model for the company.
    • Twitter has never made nearly as much money as its social media competitors like Facebook and YouTube
    • Along with other major tech companies, it has also seen a major decline in its stock value in the past year.
    • According to a recent report in Reuters, the service’s most active and lucrative users have been leaving in droves since the pandemic.
  • Make Twitter a “free speech” platform.  “I think it’s essential to have free speech and to be able to communicate freely,” said Musk at a Twitter employee meeting in June that Vox obtained a recording of.
    • The recent proliferation of “free speech”-themed platforms like Parler, Truth Social, and Gettr have shown that if you let anyone say whatever they want on a social media app, there’s a good chance that app could become a hate-filled, toxic place — which is why even these relatively more lax platforms have some basic content moderation policies.

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  • Bring back Trump: Musk has said he would reinstate former President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, which was banned for his tweets about the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot.  “I think that was a mistake because it alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice,” Musk told the Financial Times in May. “Banning Trump from Twitter didn’t end Trump’s voice. It will amplify it among the right, and that is why it’s morally wrong and flat-out stupid.”
  • Get Rid of Bots:  Musk has promised to fix Twitter’s “bots” issue — meaning the prevalence of accounts that post spam or inauthentic content like crypto get-rich-quick-schemes and phishing scams.
  • Superapp called 'X': Musk had said that he wants to fulfill Twitter’s potential by making it much more than a social media app: turning it into a “superapp.” The original superapp is China’s WeChat, which people use to do everything from paying their bills to ordering takeout to messaging their friends.

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CBC News | Pete Evans | Nov 1, 2022

Elon Musk, the newly minted owner, chair and CEO of Twitter, says he wants to let anyone get verified on the platform for $8 a month, in exchange for being able to post longer messages and videos, and receiving fewer ads.

  • Last year, Twitter launched an expanded version of its service called Twitter Blue, which comes with a monthly fee but adds the ability to edit tweets, and allows some users to charge for their own content.
    • Musk called the current system of verification a "lords & peasants system"

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  • On Tuesday, Musk tweeted that he wants to change the system so that anyone can get verified, as long as they are willing to pay $8 a month, with the "price adjusted by country proportionate to purchasing power parity."
    • In exchange, verified users will be prioritized in searches and mentions, which Musk believes is essential to defeat spam/scam" that he says plagues the system.
    • Musk said, verified users will be subjected to fewer ads, and he suggested that he was open to the idea of paying some users for the content they produce on the platform.  "Power to the people!," he said.

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