Category Archives: Twitter

CNBC Had A “Sprawling” Interview With Elon Musk

Tesla CEO Elon Musk sat down for a sprawling interview with CNBC anchor David Faber on Tuesday following Tesla’s 2023 annual shareholder meeting in Austin, Texas, CNBC reported.

During the course of their approximately hour long conversation, Musk reflected on:

How he has managed a takeover of Twitter so far and what lies ahead. Among other things, he said Twitter’s Community Notes feature has cost Twitter $40 million in business when two big clients reduced spending after their ads received community notes accusing them of false advertising. He also claimed that when the acquisition closed, Twitter had negative $3 billion in annual cash flow and $1 billion in the bank.

He also defended his own tweets that were widely criticized as lending credence to conspiracies about George Soros and a recent mass shooting event in Allen, Texas, insisting “I’ll say what I want, and if the consequence of that is losing money, so be it.”

His political views, including his belief that Joe Biden won the 2020 election and it wasn’t stolen, but that he thinks there was at least some voting fraud. He also said he voted for Biden but hinted that he wasn’t happy with his choice, saying “I wish we could have just a normal human being as president.”

His personal views and habits when it comes to work and productivity: He said he takes only two or three days off per year, works seven days a week and gets six hours of sleep a night. He also said he believes it’s morally wrong for people in the “laptop class” to advocate for working form home when service workers, such as people who work in factories, still have to show up in person.

CNBC also posted an article titled: “Elon Musk: Working from home is ‘morally wrong’ when service workers still have to show up” From the article:

Silicon Valley “laptop classes” need to get off their “moral high horse” with their “work-from-home bull***, Tesla CEO Elon Musk told CNBC’s David Faber in a Tuesday interview.

Musk was discussing return-to-office imperatives that have caused significant concern among tech workers in Silicon Valley and across the U.S., many of who were promised generous remote work mandates by top executives.

“I think that the whole notion of work from home is a bit like the fake Marie Antoinette quote, ‘Let them eat cake’,” Musk said. “It’s not just a productive thing,” Musk said, “I think it’s morally wrong.”

Musk referred to tech workers as the “laptop classes living in la-la-land,” telling Faber it was hypocritical to work from home while expecting service workers to continue to show up in person.

Twitter’s headquarters in the United States is located in San Francisco, California. The California Civil Rights Department clearly states: “Disability discrimination occurs when an employer treats a qualified employee or applicant unfavorably because she has a disability. The law also requires an employer to provide reasonable accommodation to an employee or job applicant with a disability, unless doing so would cause significant difficulty or expense for the employer.”

It seems to me that reasonable accommodation for workers with disabilities should include the option to work from home. As a person who has disabilities, I find Elon Musk’s comments about employees who want to work from home to be disgusting and degrading.

Twitter Makes It’s First Acquisition With A Recruiting Startup

Twitter appears to have made its first deal of the Elon Musk era: buying a job-matching tech startup called Laskie, Axios has learned.

According to Axios, this is the company’s first know acquisition under Musk’s leadership, as well as a transaction that helps fulfill the billionaire’s aspirations to turn Twitter into a “super-app” that offers users multiple functions – including payments.

Founded in 2021, Axios noted, the San Francisco-based startup has focused on recruiting. Founder and CEO Chris Bakke previously sold another startup to the online job board Indeed. Laskie’s website now says the service is no longer available, but it’s LinkedIn page describes it as helping job seekers quickly find good job matches.

Twitter is paying in cash and stock, a source familiar with the matter tells Axios. While the exact price wasn’t disclosed, the source says it was in the “tens of millions”.

iPhone In Canada also reported that Twitter has reportedly struck up a deal to buy out HR tech startup Laskie. The deal marks Twitter’s first publicly known acquisition since Elon Musk took control of the social media giant late last year.

Musk’s Twitter has been focused on cutting spending – to the point that it laid off most of its workforce – and coming up with new ways of making money rather than spending it, iPhone In Canada reported.

Twitter’s motives for buying Laskie are currently unknown. While integrating Laskie’s technology into Twitter could potentially position it as a competitor to Microsoft’s LinkedIn, how Musk plans to go about doing so is anyone’s best guess, iPhone in Canada stated.

TechRadar posted the headline: “Elon Musk’s latest purchase might mean Twitter will be the place to find our next job”.

Twitter has made what is believed to be its first acquisition under its new and controversial leadership, TechRadar reported.

The acquisition of recruitment start-up Laskie appears to represent a step in the platform’s direction to becoming a do-it-all app – a goal set out by current CEO Elon Musk, who will continue to work on product, software, and sysops in his new role as CTO.
California-based Laskie describes itself as the “most powerful platform to hire tech talent” having raised $6 million in seed funding since its launch in 2021.

According to TechRadar, it is unclear what Musk and/or incoming CEO Linda Yaccarino’s goal is precisely, but acquiring a recruitment startup clearly indicates a step in that direction for the social network platform, likely in a bid to take on the mighty LinkedIn.

Furthermore, getting hold of Twitter has become notoriously hard (read: impossible) with the dissolution of its press department and the introduction of an automated reply that simply includes a poop emoji.

In my opinion, I think it will take a while before Laskie gets integrated into Twitter’s platform. Competing against LinkedIn could be a big challenge for Twitter, especially since so many people use LinkedIn to find their next job.

Elon Musk Says He’s Stepping Down As Twitter CEO

Elon Musk said Thursday that Twitter is getting a new CEO and that he will move to a product and technical role, CNBC reported. Musk said via Twitter that the new CEO, an unnamed woman, would start in about six weeks. He added that he would transition “to being exec chair & CTO, overseeing product, software & syops.”

According to CNBC, several Tesla investors were concerned that Musk was too distracted by running Twitter and that he should redirect his time to steering the electric vehicle company, where he is also CEO. In April, a host of progressive Tesla shareholders publicly urged Tesla’s board to ensure that Musk would dedicate more time to the automobile company.

Musk, who is also CEO of the reusable rocker maker SpaceX, completed the $44 billion acquisition of Twitter in October and made his mark there immediately. He fired the company’s top executives and laid off hundreds of employees.

The Wall Street Journal reported that NBCUniversal Head of Advertising Linda Yaccarino is “in talks” for the position of CEO. Ms. Yaccarino, chairman of global advertising and partnerships at NBCU, has been with NBCU for more than a decade, where she has been an industry advocate for finding better ways to measure the effectiveness of advertising.

TechCrunch reported that Musk did not specify who will be taking on the role as CEO of Twitter. According to TechCrunch, Musk previously said he planned to step down as CEO and appoint a new chief executive before the end of 2023, noting that he would honor the results of a poll asking whether he should remain in charge of the company. However, he has previously not named any prospective candidates.

In his time as CEO, TechCrunch wrote, Musk has significantly overhauled Twitter’s policies and features, which has led to several advertisers pausing spending on the social network. Must rolled out a revamped, pricier Twitter Blue subscription that allows users to buy verification and recently got rid of old “legacy” verified checkmarks. The platform has also disbanded its Trust and Safety council and reinstated accounts of previously banned users, including former President Donald Trump and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene.

The next CEO of Twitter is likely to be a familiar face for advertisers, The Hollywood Reporter stated. NBCUniversal’s head of advertising sales, Linda Yaccarino, is in talks for the CEO role at the social media company which is now owned by Elon Musk.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Yaccarino interviewed Musk at an advertising event three weeks ago, and last week NBCUniversal announced a new content deal with Twitter that will see the social site hosting 2024 Paris Olympics content, including an exclusive live show. A veteran ad executive, Yaccarino has led NBCU’s advertising business for the last decade, and before that spent nearly 20 years at the former Turner cable channels as an ad executive.

The Hill reported that on December 20, 2022, Elon Musk tweeted: “I will resign as CEO as soon as I find someone foolish enough to take the job after that, I will just run the software & server teams.”

It is unclear to me if this change of CEO will work out. Personally, if I were in a position that required me to hire a new CEO, I wouldn’t publicly suggest in a tweet that the new person was “foolish enough to take the job.” I have concerns that this new CEO will push a whole lot of ads into people’s Twitter accounts.

Twitter’s Encrypted DMs Are Only For Verified Users

Twitter is beginning to roll out its long promised encrypted direct messaging feature, Engadget reported. However, the initial rollout comes with some major limitations that could make it less than ideal for privacy-conscious Twitter users.

According to Engadget, the feature is currently only available to verified Twitter users, which includes Twitter Blue subscribers and those part of a “Verified Organization.” It’s not clear if this is just for the early rollout or if encryption will be added to the growing list of exclusive features for users with a checkmark. For now, encrypted chat requires both users to be verified, according to the company.

Engadget also reported that the level of encryption appears to be less secure than what other apps offer. For one, message metadata is not encrypted. Furthermore, Twitter notes that “currently, we do not offer protections against man-in-the-middle attacks” and suggests that the company itself is still able to access encrypted DMs without the participants knowing.

Twitter’s Help Center posted information titled: “About Encrypted Direct Messages”. Here are some things to know:

Users need to satisfy the following conditions in order to send and receive encrypted messages:

  • Both sender and recipient are on the latest Twitter apps (iOS, Android, Web);
  • Both sender and recipient are verified users or affiliates to a verified organization; and
  • The recipient follows the sender, or has a message to sender previously, or has accepted a Direct Message request from the sender before.

There are also some limitations to be aware of:

Groups: For now, encrypted messages can only be sent to a single recipient. We’ll soon be expanding this feature to group conversations.

Content: An encrypted message can only include text and links; media and other attachments are not supported yet.

New Devices: Currently, new devices cannot join existing encrypted conversations. Existing encrypted conversations and the message in the conversation will be filtered out on the new devices that you log into.

The Verge provided some clarifications about encrypted messages.

According to the document, encrypted DMs are only available if you are a verified user (somebody who pays for Twitter Blue), a verified organization (an organization that pays $1,000 per month), or an affiliate of a verified organization (which costs $50 per month per person). Both the sender and the recipient must be on the latest version of the Twitter app (on mobile and web). And an encrypted DM recipient must follow the sender, have sent a message to the sender in the past, or accept a DM request from the sender at some point.

The Verge also reported that Platforms like WhatsApp, Messenger, Signal, and iMessage already offer encrypted messaging for free, so having to pay for the feature on Twitter might be a hard pill to swallow.

Overall, I think this encrypted messages feature might attract people who are already paying for Twitter Blue. That said, I doubt the majority of people on Twitter, who don’t spend money to use new features, will be at all interested in paying for encrypted DM, especially because the message metadata is not encrypted.

Tucker Carlson To Revive Show On Twitter

Tucker Carlson will be reviving his show on Twitter, after being abruptly dismissed from Fox News last month, The Guardian reported.

In a tweet captioned, “We’re back,” Carlson on Tuesday shared a video discussing his next moves. The former host said he would be taking his show to Twitter, which he described as “the last remaining platform in the world” to allow free speech.

According to The Guardian, Carlson offered few details but promised a “new version of the show we’ve been doing for the last six and a half years.” He did not mention when the show may air.

Carlson’s pivot to Twitter comes after the site has become more welcoming to mostly-conservative accounts previously banned for spreading hate speech and disinformation under Elon Musk’s new direction. The billionaire took over the site in October 2022 and promptly allowed previously banished accounts to return, including that of Donald Trump.

The Guardian noted that Twitter responded to a request for comment with a poop emoji.

Axios also reported that Carlson announced he would be bringing his show to Twitter.

“Starting soon we’ll be bringing a new version of the show we’ve been doing for the last six and a half years to Twitter,” he said in the video. “We bring some other things too, which we will tell you about. But for now, we’re just grateful to be here. Free speech is the main right that you have. Without it, you have no others.”

According to Axios, the Twitter move would seem to technically violate Carlson’s contract with Fox, but his lawyers’ letter effectively holds that Fox breached the contract first. Carlson’s contract runs until January 2025 and Fox wants to keep paying him, which would prevent him from starting a competing show.

The Hill reported that neither Fox nor Carlson has said why Carlson left the company, but reports have surfaced in recent weeks, suggesting the host’s private text messages disparaging company leadership, which were disclosed as part of Dominion Voting System’s blockbuster defamation lawsuit against Fox, led to his ouster.

According to The Hill, Elon Musk sat for an extensive interview with Carlson in his former Fox News program just days before the host left the network. Carlson gave no further details on his new project, including length, subject matter, or frequency.

Personally, I can see some potential problems if Tucker Carlson does bring his show to Twitter.
Right now, Twitter is owned by Elon Musk, who appears to be favoring conservative accounts. It is entirely possible that Mr. Musk could lose interest in Twitter and sell it to someone else. If that person’s viewpoints clash with Carlson’s, his show might be removed from Twitter.

There’s also a potential problem with Fox News, who is continuing to pay Carlson to prevent him from starting a competing show. Would Fox News see Carlson’s Twitter show as breaking a non-compete contract?

Overall, I think Carlson would be better off creating a podcast of whatever he wants to say, instead of using Twitter as if it was a news network.

More Than Half Of Twitter Blue’s Earliest Subscribers Flew Away

Twitter Blue’s struggles since its launch nearly six months ago are more severe than previously revealed, new data suggests. Since Musk’s version of the subscription service launched last November, Twitter has only been able to convert around 640,000 Twitter users into paying Twitter Blue subscribers as of the end of April, Mashable reported.

Mashable also reported that while those numbers are lackluster, an even more telling detail about Twitter Blue is just how many of its earliest subscribers have canceled their subscriptions.

Out of about 150,000 early subscribers to Twitter Blue, just around 68,157 have stuck around and maintained a paid subscription as of April 30. Subscriptions are $8 per month – $11 on mobile.

According to Mashable, the total early subscriber numbers are linked directly to internal leaks published by the Washington Post last year showing that at total of 150,000 users originally signed up for Twitter Blue within just a few days of its launch in November. Twitter temporarily disabled new signups for about a month shortly after those users subscribed as a result of accounts signing up for Blue with the intent to impersonate major brands on the platform.

Mashable noted, that means around 81,843 users, or 54.5 percent, of Twitter users who subscribed to Twitter Blue when it first launched in November are no longer subscribed to the service. That’s an abnormally high churn rate for an online subscription services. Churn rate is the percentage of uses that unsubscribe from a service.

Twitter Blue is a paid offering from Twitter which provides subscribers with premium feature such as an edit button. However, it appears the most enticing features for subscribers are Musk’s featured additions to the service – namely the blue verification checkmark and the algorithm boost that provides Blue subscribers with prioritization in the For You feed and in the replies to tweets.

However, numerous Twitter Blue users have voiced their displeasure to Musk publicly on the platform about what they believe to be inadequate amounts of boosted reach. Mashable previously reported in March that around half of Twitter Blue subscribers have less than 1,000 followers.

Mashable reported that so few large accounts were formerly verified under Twitter’s old, pre-Musk verification system had signed up for Twitter Blue, that the company has since given out free “complementary” subscriptions to the service to many users with at least 1 million followers.

Personally, I have noticed that some celebrities on Twitter have publicly posted that they were not paying for Twitter Blue. As an example, Stephen King tweeted: “My Twitter account says I’ve subscribed to Twitter Blue. I haven’t. My Twitter account says I’ve given a phone number. I haven’t.”

I think the only reason some celebrities who have over 1,000 followers were given a free Twitter Blue subscription was to make it look as though Twitter Blue was popular. Information from Mashable makes it clear that Twitter Blue isn’t as popular as Elon Musk wants the world to think it is.

Twitter Acknowledged Security Incident Affecting Twitter Circle Tweets

Back in April, several Twitter users were affected by a bug that showed private Twitter Circle tweets to random users in the For You tab. A month later, Twitter acknowledged the security incident and informed users in an email sent out on Friday that the bug has now been fixed, 9to5Mac reported.

Twitter Circle is a feature that works similarly to Instagram’s Close Friends, which lets you share posts with only the users you’ve chosen. As such, anyone can keep their account open to the public and still share tweets about their personal lives with their closest friends, for example.

But the bug that Twitter has now confirmed was causing these tweets to show up on the timeline of people who weren’t part of that Circle. Even worse, random users who didn’t even follow the affected accounts could see the tweets from private Circles.

TechCrunch also reported that a security error that made Circle tweets – posts that only go out to a small subset of trusted friends – surface publicly. TechCrunch reported the glitch in early April, but the platform confirmed the issue on May 5th in an email sent to Twitter Circle users.

According to TechCrunch, Twitter Circle has been buggy for months, which is concerning for a feature that people use to tweet things they don’t want to share with all of their followers. When we reported on the issue last month, numerous users had been tweeting that people outside of their circle were liking their private tweets; one user even said that she posted nude photos on her Circle, which slipped through the cracks and surfaced for unintended eyes.

Most often, it seemed that Circle tweets were being surfaced in the For You timeline to users who follow the poster, but were not in their Circle. Others reported that their Circle tweets were reaching even further than those who follow them.

Fortune posted the entire email that was sent out to Twitter Circle users:


We’re contacting you because your Twitter account may have been potentially impacted by a security incident that occurred earlier this year (April 2023).

What Happened

In April 2023, a security incident may have allowed users outside of your Twitter Circle to see tweets that should have otherwise been limited to the Circle in which you were posting. This issue was identified by our security team and immediately fixed so that these tweets were no longer visible outside of your Circle.

How to Protect Your Account

We take our responsibility to protect your privacy very seriously and it is unfortunate that this happened. While there’s no action for you to take specific to this issue, we invite you to visit our Public and Protected Tweets page… (A link to that page was posted here in the email.)

This is an automated mailbox. For any questions or concerns you may have about this incident, please reach out to Twitter’s Office of Data Protection through our Data Protection Inquiry Firm.

We recognize and appreciate the trust you place in us, and are committed to earning that trust every day.

Twitter Office of Data Protection

I don’t use Twitter Circle, and my personal account is private. As such, I have not been affected by this particular glitch. Those who had their Twitter Circle posts leak outside their Circle have a right to be upset about it, and I doubt Twitter’s email would make them feel any better.

Clearly, something broke in Twitter’s background, and that’s a problem. If Twitter Circle tweets are leaking out – it indicates that something has gone very wrong behind the scenes at Twitter. It feels like it has gotten into a downward spiral.