It’s Friday, so let’s preserve the Elon Musk/Twitter updates to a minimal, lets?
Okay. There’s, like, so much.
As anticipated, Elon’s plan to promote blue checkmarks, which now not signify verification (as there’s no form of ID checking in the updated process), has led to a raft of individuals impersonating outstanding identities and types within the app.
Which is what everybody mentioned would occur, but Elon pushed forward with it anyway, explaining that it will be ‘the great leveler’, in that it will allow everybody to get a blue checkmark, not simply celebrities – though promoting the tiny profile graphic negates the entire function of Twitter’s verification system.
The impersonation problem has gotten so unhealthy, so quick, that Twitter has now paused the new $8 Twitter Blue offering, with a purpose to re-assess the method.
Twitter’s additionally now lastly determined to go forward with its new, additional grey tick for ‘official’ profiles that Twitter thinks want some form of indicator that they’re the precise, legit profile of this particular entity.
Twitter announced this on Tuesday, then Elon ‘killed it’ just hours after launch, then the gray markers started appearing again, then Twitter announced that they weren’t rolling them out, then, a day later, Twitter mentioned that they actually would be rolling them out once more.
And now, they’re apparently in manufacturing, and as you may see above, the grey tick not solely seems on person profiles, but additionally on their tweets in-stream, providing you with that cool, double tick credibility.
Along with this, Musk has additionally laid out new guidelines for parody accounts:
Going ahead, accounts engaged in parody should embody “parody” of their identify, not simply in bio
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 11, 2022
But, on the similar time, Twitter has additionally stopped currently verified users from changing their username, which was applied to cease individuals from making enjoyable of Elon particularly earlier within the week – so some people who find themselves operating parody accounts now can’t list such as per Elon’s directions, placing their profiles in danger.
Truthfully, the vectors for deception and scams have elevated drastically with this new ‘checkmark-for-sale’ course of, and it’s evident from simply the primary few days that that is going to be an issue, which goes to result in many individuals falling for scams.
However as we’ve previously noted, Musk is simply nervous about how a lot cash Twitter will get, and with every account paying $8 to run every rip-off, he appears comparatively pleased with the method up to now.
Wants some tweaks, however total continuing effectively
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 11, 2022
To reiterate, the median cost of reported social media scams in the US last year was $468, so scammers are basically risking an $8 fantastic for a chance to make 58x that, on common.
In the event you wanted proof that it is a money seize for Elon, who’s desperately making an attempt to claw again cash, then that is it.
However, after all, Elon’s blaming points with the method on the media – which he’ll preserve doing when the variety of paying subscribers fails to hit his targets.
As Twitter pursues the objective of elevating citizen journalism, media elite will strive all the pieces to cease that from taking place
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 11, 2022
Which goes to occur.
If Elon ultimately will get one million individuals signed up for his $8 blue checkmark providing, that might be large, and if he obtained two million, that might be superb. But, that might nonetheless solely equate to lower than 1% of Twitter’s total person base, and Musk must get all the actual people paying to ensure that his broader bot-battling, revenue-raising plan to work.
It received’t, however once more, it actually received’t be Elon’s fault.
Additionally price noting right here – Twitter initially added the blue checkmarks after being sued by a former MLB player over impersonation, with a scammer utilizing his likeness to dupe individuals within the app. You’d must think about that related lawsuits will certainly be on the playing cards after this newest chaos.
Money Move Challenges
So why is Elon so determined to push forward with half-baked plans so shortly?
As a result of he wants the cash.
At an all-staff assembly this week, Musk advised Twitter’s remaining workers that they can no longer work from home, which had been a long-standing coverage on the firm, whereas he additionally knowledgeable them that the enterprise may well go bankrupt soon.
As per Musk:
“We simply undoubtedly want to herald extra cash than we spend. If we don’t try this and there’s a large damaging money move then chapter is just not out of the query.”
Twitter was reportedly losing $4 million per day when Musk took over, which is why he’s moved so shortly on employees cuts, and on pushing out one thing – something – to make more cash. However the suggestion that Twitter might really collapse has spooked many banks and investment funds that have backed the Musk takeover deal, with some now seeking to distance themselves from the enterprise as quick as they’ll.
Some have additionally questioned whether or not Musk has an ulterior motive in tanking the enterprise. Which appears unlikely, however that’s how unhealthy the scenario has change into, and with all of Twitter’s former senior management staff now exiting the corporate (Musk lost four more execs this week, although he did convince one to stay), there’s little religion that Musk will have the ability to get the platform again on monitor, and making actual cash any time quickly.
However then once more, lots of people appear to be signing up for the brand new $8 checkmark possibility. Or they have been, until Twitter minimize it off.
There’s additionally a query on that entrance as to how sustainable any earnings might be from that course of, as Musk wants individuals to maintain paying, each month, to maintain bringing in money.
That appears unlikely – however then once more, if scammers can preserve earning money…
The New YouTube?
Within the aforementioned all-staff assembly this week, Musk additionally famous his plans to introduce a new revenue share program for video creators in the app, very like YouTube, however with a greater income share share, with a purpose to lure creators in.
The one hitch is that Musk additionally confirmed that he has no concept concerning the aggressive panorama on this respect, nor how such a system would possibly work.
As Musk told Twitter employees:
“Let’s simply get a bunch of content material creators that we expect are cool on YouTube and say, “Hey, would you contemplate placing your content material on Twitter, and we’ll pay you 10 p.c greater than YouTube and see the way it goes?” Let’s try this. Okay, nice. So you’ll try this? […] I’m a giant believer in having only a maniacal sense of urgency. So if you are able to do it after this assembly, I’d do it after this assembly. Only a maniacal sense of urgency. Like, if you wish to get stuff performed, maniacal sense of urgency. Simply go “aah!” Hardcore!”
The issue is, internet hosting long-form video at scale is expensive, and Musk has additionally tasked Twitter employees with reducing infrastructure costs by $1 billion.
As a reminder, Twitter cut its separate Periscope app last year, as a result of it was too pricey to run, and whenever you issue all of those components collectively, it’s clearly not so simple as simply going ‘hardcore’ and flipping a change on a brand new video creator monetization program, particularly one which, in the event that they do supply a greater income cut up, would probably change into money damaging for the app.
Alongside an identical line:
Undecided how completely happy I’d really feel, as an funding accomplice, to seek out out that my new CEO doesn’t know that a lot concerning the business, and even the corporate itself.
For reference, Twitter acquired messaging app Quill last December.
Look, all of this appears chaotic and messy, and ridiculous for probably the most half. However then once more, in line with Elon:
Is there a way that he can convey all the pieces again collectively?
I can’t see it, however I additionally settle for that possibly Elon, who’s pushed success at his different corporations, has a completely completely different perspective and imaginative and prescient right here.
And as numerous Musk supporters have pointedly knowledgeable me of their feedback on my posts, I’m not a billionaire.
Undoubtedly looks like it’ll want some next-level, Mars colonization considering to proper the ship.