Elon Musk’s tenure as Twitter’s CEO lasted only a few months, and now he is considering quitting and appointing a replacement. Musk discussed the acquisition’s rationale in comparison to starting his own social media company.
Musk stated, “I thought about creating something from scratch, but I thought Twitter would perhaps accelerate progress by three to five years versus creating something from scratch.” In addition, I believe we are witnessing such a tremendous technological acceleration that a period of three to five years is actually significant.
Musk stated that he was “a little worried about the direction and the effect of social media on the world, and especially Twitter” when discussing his reasons for purchasing Twitter.
“I thought it was essential for there to be a digital public square with the greatest level of trust, where people from all over the world and within their own countries could communicate with the least amount of censorship permitted by law. That obviously varies greatly by jurisdiction.
Musk asked his 128.9 million Twitter followers in December whether he should step down as CEO, and 57.5 percent of those who responded said yes.
While major corporations are withdrawing advertising funds from the platform, Musk’s reliance on polls to make major company decisions has been criticized.
According to data obtained by CNN earlier this week, more than half of Twitter’s top 1,000 advertisers have stopped advertising (as of January) since Musk took over the social media platform. The identity of a possible successor to Musk’s position has not been made public.
However, social media companies “should adhere to the laws of other countries and not try to put a thumb on the scale beyond the laws of countries,” Musk stated on Wednesday. He said that Twitter’s business practices were influenced by the “values” of San Francisco and the nearby University of California, Berkeley, which he called a “niche ideology.”
Musk stated when explaining his reasons for purchasing Twitter, “I thought it was important, kind of, for the future of civilization to try to correct that thumb on the scale.”
Musk has come under fire for trying to walk a fine line between supporting free speech and adhering to censorship laws in other countries, which is reflected in his remarks.
A BBC documentary that was critical of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi sparked the most recent controversy. Twitter and other social media platforms were instructed to block links to the documentary by the Indian government a month ago. NBC News reported that Twitter appeared to have complied with the directive.
In January, Musk responded to a user who asked if it had been confirmed that Twitter followed the instructions from the Indian government.