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Should Elon Musk Be Allowed to Own Twitter?
Anti-monopoly laws are powerless to stop the meme king pyramid scheme corporate socialist
Twitter is tiny.
It only has 436 million monthly active users.
It’s not even in the top ten social media sites.
It lags behind Pinterest, Telegram, Snapchat, Kauishou, Sina Weibo, QQ, Douyin, Tiktok, WeChat, Instagram, WhatsApp, Youtube, and Facebook.
Facebook is nearly 7X the size of Twitter, with nearly 3 billion monthly active users.
But when it comes to politics, Twitter really is king, isn’t it?
It’s the Western world’s digital town hall.
Unfortunately — unlike most town halls — Twitter isn’t democratic.
It’s a private company owned by a single shareholder who just fired the entire board and made himself king of the corporation.
And this king is not a good dude.
He’s a tax evader.
He’s a corporate socialist.
Should he really be allowed to own America’s town hall?
There are major problems with Elon Musk owning Twitter.
First, he wants to let users charge people to watch their videos. (So like Instagram and Tiktok, but not free.)
This will all but guarantee Twitter descends into an OnlyFans-style porn site.
Second, he wants to charge verified users $240 per year to keep their blue checkmark.
This prompted a hilarious exchange with thriller author Stephen King:
I love this so much…. a dude hoarding $200 billion haggling with a guy hoarding $500 million over twelve bucks.
And it begs the question:
Why does Elon even need Twitter to make money?
Can’t it just be his pet project and grand contribution to humanity?
Isn’t Tesla the hottest most profitable company in historyTM?
Profit from pain
Within days of taking over, Musk dropped the price of a blue checkmark from $20/month to $8/month.
And despite the complaints, people will still fork over billions due to FOMO.
And he’s not even getting rid of advertising; even paying Twitter users will still remain the product being sold to advertisers.
If there’s good news, it’s that he’s apparently going to introduce a Medium-style system to reward content creators.
But there’s also a dark underside at play here.
As Matthew Chapman points out, Elon thinks a blue check is a status symbol, but it’s actually a security feature:
“Making it a paid service will hurt a ton of journalists and make fake news spread more easily. Charging journalists for a security feature (at a price no one will pay) will make this site less reputable.”
In other words, this is a war on truth.
Nevermind all the millions of soon-to-be-blue-checked Russ!an and Ch!nese accounts, even domestic “reporting” will become a gong show.
Because what goes viral faster — responsible journalism by verified experts or rageviews by conspiracy theorists?
But maybe that’s the whole point.
War criminal Mark Zuckerberg’s entire Face-hate model was based on radicalizing people with highly-clickable fury posts.
There’s an extremely strong likelihood that Twitter is about to become a much darker, angrier, and right-leaning place, especially when Musk lets The Donald back on.
What will become of Twitter?
Only time will tell.
Like most things, it won’t be all bad and all good.
Don’t believe the hardcore haters and don’t believe the fanboys.
Twitter under Mr. Musk will have costs and benefits.
It’s up to us to run the analysis.
But for those who are keeping track, Elon will likely do to Twitter what he’s done to Tesla and Dogecoin and every other meme in which he’s involved:
He’ll monetize as many currently-free features as possible.
He’ll fire half of all staff and slash salaries and benefits for the worker bees who remain. (And impregnate at least one of them.)
He’ll introduce a bunch of dopey but shiny features to attract an initial surge of traffic.
He’ll bang the “free speech” drums and attract a huge right-wing audience.
His new audience will click like crazy on the billions of highly-viral hate Tweets.
He’ll IPO the company again in order to “democratize” it.
He’ll stock split to boost the share price just like he does with his other companies.
He’ll have another Twitter poll to justify his liquidation at the top.
He’ll cash out and make a mint.
Mark my words, friends, Elon Musk will find a way to squeeze a profit out of Twitter because he knows how truly stupid Americans can be.
What should happen to Twitter?
First off, the fact that one of the world’s top 5 richest oligarchs can devour America’s town hall is unacceptable.
We need anti-monopoly laws with teeth.
Second, we need to have a serious conversation about whether or not democracy is okay with corporatists controlling our media.
Are we okay that Jeff Bezos controls the Washington Post?
Are we okay that Rupert Murdoch owns Fox and The Sun?
Are we okay that Mark Zuckerberg foments literal civil wars for clicks?
Third, and most importantly, there comes a point where corporations grow so large and the stakes for democracy become so high that we simply have to nationalize them as common carriers for the sake of the national interest, just like we did with Vanderbilt’s railroads.
Twitter should be placed in a not-for-profit trust, stewarded by an unpaid board with zero conflicts of interest, and governed by iron-clad and highly-transparent regulations.
But with $44 billion invested, the strong likelihood is that the meme king will just play his old hits and walk away with a boatload of cash.
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