There was a time, many years ago, when Elon Musk was something of a celebrity in the technology industry, to the point where many folks were calling him the “real life” Tony Stark. This was due in no small part to his association with groundbreaking (at the time) technology companies Tesla and SpaceX and billionaire status. His cameo appearance in Iron Man 2 just stoked the nerd fandom even further. Fast forward a few more years and the bloom has come off the rose, though there are still many who defend him as a business genius, or even just a genius in general. Make no mistake, he is the richest man in the world, but apparently money can’t buy wisdom, just the marketing to cover up the lack of it.
All aboard the Twitter hate train
It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of social media. Before Musk took over Twitter it was already well on its way to becoming a haven for trolls, misinformation and hate speech, and it seemed like Twitter management at the time was only concerned about these problems when advertisers threatened to pull out of the platform. Enter Musk in 2022 who promised upon taking the company private to loosen content restrictions as well as crack down on the spam and follower bots. While there does not seem to be any noticeable change in the number of bots on Twitter, he certainly seems to have succeeded in removing whatever vestigial content moderation that had existed prior to his takeover. According to a paper published by the University of Southern California “Auditing Elon Musk’s Impact on Hate Speech and Bots,” the amount of hate speech has nearly doubled on Twitter since his purchase of the stagnating social media platform in October of 2022. For any other reasonable human being, this would not be considered a win, but Musk seems to be intent on riding this particular handbasket all the way to hell, including claiming the exact opposite, without providing any sort of backing evidence. In case it’s not immediately clear what my position on Twitter might be, any platform that blindly labels an imposter account as a certified representative of one of the largest entertainment companies in the world should not be entrusted with the level of influence Twitter still wields.
Image by Htc Erl from Pixabay