During a recent livestream with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Elon Musk discussed plans to introduce a monthly subscription for all users of X, formerly known as Twitter, as part of a strategy aimed at combating the platform’s “vast armies of robots”.
CNBC reports that SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk has once again made headlines, this time for his plans to overhaul the social media landscape. During a live chat with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Musk announced that X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, may implement a monthly subscription for all users. The move is part of a broader strategy to combat the proliferation of bots on the platform.
“We are moving to a small monthly payment for using System X,” Musk said, although he did not disclose the exact cost or what features would be included in the new subscription model. This announcement comes as Musk boasts of having 550 million active monthly users on Twitter/X who generate between 100 and 200 million posts per day. While the number seems impressive, it’s unclear what percentage of these accounts are bots rather than people, and Musk doesn’t disclose the platform’s metrics to metrics previously used by Twitter, so a historical comparison of the platform health is difficult.
The conversation with Netanyahu was initially expected to focus on the theoretical risks of artificial intelligence technology and its potential regulation. However, Musk took the opportunity to respond to allegations of hate speech and anti-Semitism on Twitter/X. The platform has come under scrutiny for amplifying bigotry, leading Musk to threaten legal action against the Anti-Defamation League, a left-wing organization.
Musk’s leadership has brought significant changes to Twitter/X since its acquisition for approximately $44 billion in late October. The platform also removed its “blue check” verification system, replacing it with a blue subscriber badge for users paying a fee. Those who pay see their posts prioritized, while non-paying users experience lower levels of amplification for their posts. It remains to be seen whether Musk will adopt a plan to charge all users for access to the platform, instead of just those seeking algorithmic reinforcement.
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Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship.