It’s Friday, so let’s preserve the Elon Musk/Twitter updates to a minimal, we could?
Okay. There’s, like, lots.
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 distinguished identities and types within the app.
Which is what everybody stated 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 goal of Twitter’s verification system.
The impersonation concern has gotten so dangerous, so quick, that Twitter has now paused the new $8 Twitter Blue offering, with the intention to re-assess the method.
Twitter’s additionally now lastly determined to go forward with its new, further grey tick for ‘official’ profiles that Twitter thinks want some kind 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 stated that they actually would be rolling them out once more.
And now, they’re apparently in manufacturing, and as you’ll be able to see above, the grey tick not solely seems on consumer profiles, but in addition on their tweets in-stream, supplying 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 embrace “parody” of their title, not simply in bio
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 11, 2022
But, on the identical time, Twitter has additionally stopped currently verified users from changing their username, which was carried out to cease individuals from making enjoyable of Elon particularly earlier within the week – so some people who find themselves working parody accounts now can’t list such as per Elon’s directions, placing their profiles in danger.
Actually, 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 apprehensive 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 to this point.
Wants some tweaks, however total continuing properly
— 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 tremendous for a possibility to make 58x that, on common.
If you happen to wanted proof that this can be 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 purpose of elevating citizen journalism, media elite will attempt the whole lot to cease that from occurring
— 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 received two million, that might be superb. But, that might nonetheless solely equate to lower than 1% of Twitter’s total consumer base, and Musk must get all the true people paying to ensure that his broader bot-battling, revenue-raising plan to work.
It gained’t, however once more, it definitely gained’t be Elon’s fault.
Additionally value 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 need to think about that comparable lawsuits will certainly be on the playing cards after this newest chaos.
Money Movement Challenges
So why is Elon so determined to push forward with half-baked plans so rapidly?
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 positively want to herald more money than we spend. If we don’t do this and there’s an enormous destructive money move then chapter shouldn’t be out of the query.”
Twitter was reportedly losing $4 million per day when Musk took over, which is why he’s moved so rapidly 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 trying to distance themselves from the enterprise as quick as they will.
Some have additionally questioned whether or not Musk has an ulterior motive in tanking the enterprise. Which appears unlikely, however that’s how dangerous the state of affairs has develop into, and with all of Twitter’s former senior management workforce 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 observe, 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 had been, until Twitter minimize it off.
There’s additionally a query on that entrance as to how sustainable any revenue will probably 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 being profitable…
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 similar to YouTube, however with a greater income share share, with the intention to lure creators in.
The one hitch is that Musk additionally confirmed that he has no thought concerning the aggressive panorama on this respect, nor how such a system may 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 think about placing your content material on Twitter, and we’ll pay you 10 % greater than YouTube and see the way it goes?” Let’s do this. Okay, nice. So you’ll do 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 executed, 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 expensive to run, and once you issue all of those components collectively, it’s clearly not so simple as simply going ‘hardcore’ and flipping a swap on a brand new video creator monetization program, particularly one which, in the event that they do supply a greater income cut up, would possible develop into money destructive for the app.
Alongside an identical line:
Unsure how blissful I’d really feel, as an funding accomplice, to seek out out that my new CEO doesn’t know that a lot concerning the trade, 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, based on Elon:
Is there a way that he can convey the whole lot again collectively?
I can’t see it, however I additionally settle for that perhaps Elon, who’s pushed success at his different corporations, has a wholly totally 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.
Positively looks as if it’ll want some next-level, Mars colonization considering to proper the ship.