How has Twitter changed since Elon Musk’s ownership?

Anyone with an Internet connection is well aware that Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk purchased the social media platform, Twitter, in October 2022. I have been an active Twitter user for many years and have always enjoyed using it as a way to keep up to date with memes and retweet jokes my followers might find funny. I don’t have a large presence on the app, but my friends and I will like each other’s tweets and send things back and forth to each other.

I, like other Twitter users, was curious to see what would happen to the platform upon Musk’s overtaking of the platform, and I saw many of my favorite celebrities decide to leave the platform altogether in protest of Musk’s ownership. I have never been a “fan” of Elon Musk, and in recent years I have found his views on gender identity and sexuality very harmful, as members of the LGBT community are actively persecuted by individuals who adhere to beliefs like Musk’s.

So far, it has been disheartening, to say the least. Watching the accounts of hate groups who were previously banned from Twitter for posting homophobic, racist, misogynistic, or otherwise dangerous content be reinstated was simultaneously shocking and expected. Under the guise of protecting free speech, Musk has vowed not to suspend accounts that post hateful rhetoric or misinformation, also reinstating the account of a known Neo-Nazi, Andrew Anglin. Additionally, Musk has threatened to sue an anti-hate group that has published research on the uptick of hate speech on the platform. Twitter has never been the perfect platform for disarming hate groups, but it has only gotten worse since Musk has taken over.

Furthermore, Twitter has faced massive layoffs in 2023 and has been “underperforming” since Musk gained ownership and is projected to lose up to $2 billion in ad revenue this year.

As we can imagine, it is not enough for us to believe in the “goodwill” of those behind social media platforms like Twitter, as people like Musk are at the helm. Because social media is so prevalent in society and a primary method of keeping in touch with loved ones. However, because of the questionable ethics of those behind these platforms, it is important to know what is going on behind the scenes. It is each user’s personal decision as to whether or not they choose to remain on the platform or not; therefore, they must decide if it is worth supporting individuals who have opposing morals.

While I still use Twitter, I have moved on to other platforms for pop culture news and entertainment, like Tumblr and YouTube. These platforms are far from perfect, but I feel more comfortable with them than I do on Twitter because I feel greater ownership of the conversations I have. While what I post is my own thoughts and feelings, the owners of these social platforms own them as part of their brand. Because I am more aware of Elon Musk’s indiscretions than I am of the owners of Tumblr and Youtube, I question Twitter more.

Overall, I think it’s important to remain educated on the issues Twitter is continually facing and strive to bring truth by correcting misinformation on the platform.

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