Musk proposes charge for X users
NEW YORK. – Elon Musk has suggested charging all users of his social media platform X, which would be the biggest shake-up since he took over the site then known as Twitter last October, but experts say he might struggle to get users on board.
During a talk with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, Musk said that introducing a “small monthly payment” for X was the only way to combat the legions of automated accounts, known as bots.
But X users united in dismay at the plan, suggesting it could finally put an end to the site, and analysts questioned the logic of a move that would make the platform even less appealing to advertisers.
“I imagine that a large number of people won’t go through the hassle of adding payment details, regardless of how small the price is,” said Simon Kemp, founder of online advisory firm Kepios.
Musk bought Twitter for US$44 billion but has since admitted its value has plunged after he gutted its workforce and allowed right-wing conspiracy theorists back on the site, sending advertisers fleeing.
Musk said in July the platform had lost roughly half its advertising revenue, though a month earlier he had claimed that almost all advertisers had returned and that 90 percent of bots had been removed. X did not respond to a request for details on the plan to charge users. – AFP