Today, Elon Musk was told to continue clearing his Tweets through Tesla’s attorney. He’s lost his mind and the company suffers as he puts out really dumb stuff. You think 44 Billion could do a lot to make the world a safer and more compassionate place, but no, Mr. Musk bought Twitter and has continued to burn it down. The blue checkmark, once a symbol of “identity verification” is now just an $8 surcharge that makes users look stupid who have it. I don’t think that’s the cash flow fix he was hoping for.
Obviously, Mr. Musk doesn’t care if Twitter ever finds its higher purpose or if it just implodes like social platforms before it. Trump is back, basically retweeting his (un)Truths from TruthSocial. And then you’ve got the preordained Mayor of Mars. (Can we send him there any quicker, please.) Who needs to be moderated by a lawyer to make sure he doesn’t tank any of his companies with his wreckless and random 4:20 humor on Twitter?
He’s given Trump his megaphone back. He’s about to do a deal with Tucker Carlson. What makes you think Musk’s acquisition of Twitter was not a huge political move? If Mr. Musk and his MAGA supporters want to alter Twitter’s algorithm, they can show you any content they like. Ever wonder why Mr. Musk’s tweets show up in your “picked for you” all the damn time? And so, if Twitter can sculpt and warp your feed to include their own MAGA initiatives, what’s different than the Russians or Chinese hacking our elections? Mr. Musk is going to do it in plain sight.
I’m not sure what the solution is. I’ve been a Twitter user since it was launched at SXSW here in Austin. If you want to she what batsh*t crazy social media looks like, just open your Twitter feed. The rules have been reset to “whatever” with little “do you want to read the article first” warnings as you retweet stuff. And the moderators (mainly non-English speaking contractors from India) are not ever going to catch up. A post of mine was “flagged” for using the word “kill.” As in, Let’s Kill Them. But the image and what I was referring to was not a person but a process. As in, “Let’s Kill Moderation by people who can’t understand the English language.”
I’m still using Twitter daily. And for the most part, Mr. Musk’s tampering hasn’t actually killed the platform. But he’s still trying.
Is it okay that a far-right MAGA head who celebrates with Jan. 6 deniers should be the head of one of the largest social media firms going into the 2024 election? The best hope is that Trump’s indictments render him unelectable. Then, Mr. Musk can focus on DeSantis. Or perhaps a run himself.
Naw. Let’s just help him get to Mars ASAP.
John McElhenney — let’s connect online
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