After many twists and turns, the billionaire has been at the head of the social network for a few days now.
It’s hard not to talk about Elon Musk as he takes up space in tech news with the takeover of Twitter. His speeches on the moderation of the platform and on freedom of expression had made noise, which had even caused a call for a boycott on the part of NGOs. His early days as Twitter boss were also eventful.
Trolls want to test the limits of moderation
Once the acquisition of Twitter formalized, the reaction was not long in coming: according to the Network Contagion Research Institute (NCRI), a social media research group, the use of racist terms immediately increased by 500%. A way for trolls to check if the moderation rules had changed and if Elon Musk accepted their vision of freedom of expression.
According to the group, this influx of racist tweets most likely comes from the site 4chan, where publications encouraged mass tweeting of abusive language. So much so that on October 29, Elon Musk himself had to clarify that there had been no change in the moderation policy yet.
Elon Musk is already thinking about new functions
In the long term, the CEO of Tesla had already mentioned the fact of seeing Twitter make a “super app”, like WeChat in China, and of wanting to reach one billion users. In the meantime, he’s already considering a few changes that aren’t to everyone’s liking. He first endorsed the idea of dramatically increasing the maximum length of a tweet (which is currently 280 characters), or even removing that limit. He also plans to increase the maximum length of videos, which is now 2 minutes 20 for ordinary users and 10 minutes for brands for a fee. Finally, he would like to charge a subscription of 20 dollars per month to have a certified account.
These changes are likely to drastically change the application and the way users interact. For the best or for the worst ? In a tweet posted on October 27 for advertisers, Elon Musk had explained that he had bought the social network because he was worried about the polarization of opinions and the lack of dialogue and that, for him, “it is important for the future of civilization that there is a digital place where a wide spectrum of opinions can be debated in a healthy way, without resorting to violence. » He also clarified that Twitter will adhere to local laws and that he wanted to make it a welcoming platform where everyone can personalize their experience. Despite these statements intended to reassure advertisers, the reactions of trolls during the takeover show that making Twitter a healthy platform for debate will not be easy.