what a twat
no other words needed to comment on elon.
Even those who do spend $7* a month to get (or keep) that treasured blue tick next to their name on Twitter may be peeved to find out that soon only verified users will be allowed to vote in polls on the platform. Bring it on: electronic ballots where only 10 people click. Most verified users – outside of, ahem, esteemed news …
I agree that he's a twat, and the whole "pedo guy" thing really put me off him.
Having said that, I don't think I've ever set up a Twitter poll, so no loss there. I still think it's an interesting platform, but I won't be paying $8 (or even $1) to use it and get a blue tick.
Unless I become an "influencer" and it's then a small price to pay for advertising.
Question is, are The Reg going to pay the $$ to keep the blue tick?
The problem is, that the people who do use Twitter polls generally do so because they want to get an idea of public opinion, and "blue tick only" is one hell of a selection bias. This renders the Twitter polls (even more) useless for people such as PR companies and political pollsters.
Is his plan really to drive Twitter into the ground? I can see the idea of a subscription service giving you additional benefits, but there comes a point where too many features are locked behind a paywall and people go elsewhere. I'm sure everyone has an example of an app or cloud service thing they've tried, looked at the price and thought "yeah, no that's not worth the extra money" and I can see he's trying to avoid that, but there's also a point where you think "no, the try-before-you-buy is too limited, I'll go somewhere else". You need to hit somewhere in between, and Twitter seems to be starting to tilt towards the latter.
Still, Mastodon exists, so there's that.
"...a recently leaked memo appeared to show Elon thought the whole shebang was only worth half what he paid for it (under $20 billion vs the $44 billion he spent)."
And note the implication of blame. It's not HIS fault that the product *he* bought went down 50% in value after he got personally involved, oh no. It's the markets, the employees, the lack of user monetization, the libs, the Spaghetti Monster, the aliens who abducted him and did their probes on his "brilliant" mind, maybe the moon phase or sunspots...
And, if and when it rebounds and stands [back] up in value, it'll be all due to his brilliance. Of course.
...in a way, of making everyone pay, and be somehow verified. After all, it might just make the bottom feeding trolls think twice about harassing people if they can actually be more readily held to account. Of course, there are ways to help do that anyway, should they have wanted to.
But, if you are forcing people to pay then that should be your revenue stream and NOT selling user info to every Tom, Dick and Harry that wants it.
And also perhaps some other verification method to replace the previous blue tick. Gold kitchen sink, perhaps?
I have an account on Twitter for funny stuff (Fesshole, etc). I almost never post anything and don't engage in the obvious baiting that goes on but my god, in most cases it does seem to be a cesspit.
After all, it might just make the bottom feeding trolls think twice about harassing people if they can actually be more readily held to account.
Certainly worked for SomethingAwful! Oh, wait.
Which is not to say that SomethingAwful wasn't a remarkable cultural phenomenon in its own right, and in places far more entertaining than anything I've ever seen that originally appeared on Twitter (according to citations, since I stopped reading anything on Twitter after just a month or so). Or that SA's pay-to-play system wasn't successful under its own terms. Or that there were no consequences – 4chan, for example, was created by and for people who were booted from SA. But there was plenty of bad behavior on SA; the goons more or less invented doxxing, for example. And that's to say nothing of the complexities and tragedies of Lowtax's own story.
MySpace is still around, and never really went anywhere. It's just been operating beneath most people's notice for the last several years. This would actually be an excellent time for them to try to remind people that they may have old accounts they'd forgotten about and if they're not happy with Facebook and/or Twitter, maybe give them another try. They may be able to grow their userbase by a few percentage points. Keep nibbling around the edges like that and pretty soon they may reach some lofty heights. Probably nothing like their heyday, but at least to the point where people don't routinely forget they exist. And after Twitter implodes, they could become the #2 social network. A distant #2, but #2 just the same.
I can. The technical debt on the back end, the mounting bills (like with AWS) that aren't being paid, the destruction of vital infrastructure (like the shutting down of a SF data center), and just overworking all the employees.
* Technical debt: Most (all?) of the people who really understood how Twitter worked are gone, and everyone left is just trying their best to keep things going as best they can. There's also probably no one left making sure that all applicable regional laws and regulations are being followed.
* Mounting bills: They haven't paid rent on basically any of their offices (and have been evicted from a couple) with lawsuits around the globe piling up, there's probably billions of dollars owed in unpaid severance to employees fired in the various rounds of mass firings, a lot of those firings probably weren't kosher with EU law. Advertisers have fled in massive numbers because they don't want to have their products associated with comments from nazis, white supremacists, misogynists, and various other undesirables that Twitler has laid out the welcome mat for, so there's maybe 50% less revenue to work with when paying bills.
* Destruction of vital infrastructure: They've shut down at least one data center for no discernable good reason, aren't paying Amazon for their AWS (and it's only going to be so long before Amazon gets tired of accepting advertising in exchange), and we've seen how any change controls on the Twitter code have gone out the window when one person has been able to bring down the entire service by accident.
* Overworking employees: How long do you suppose the average person in their 20s or 30s could work 12-hours a day, 7-days a week, before they burn out? Maybe 6-months? And long before that they'll start making mistakes in their work because they aren't well rested. There's no one to cover for them if someone gets sick or wants to take a vacation. I hope it doesn't happen, but this sweatshop bullshit is the sort of thing I could see triggering a workplace shooter event. If I were the SFPD, I'd be sure to keep a squad car or two in the general area of Twitter HQ, because it's probably only a matter of time before someone snaps. Twitler already has his bodyguards follow him into the bathroom he's so paranoid, but a gun is a great equalizer. Doesn't matter if you're 250lbs of solid muscle, a 180lbs weakling can take you down with a single shot. Kind of a dark note to end on, but it is what it is. People are not machines, and there's only so much stress they can endure.
180 lb weakling?
In UK terms that's nearly 13 stone
You can be quite a strong good amount of muscle person at that weight if you are not tall e.g. 5-8 or 5-9
On the polls point, surely most social media polls are useless due to "echo chambers" (a lot of people don't tend to follow people they massively disagree with so ) so they will generally be seen by people who share similar views
In case some of you haven't realized yet, the russians and middle east (doing putins bidding) are the ones paying. If you are on the twits, you are being subjugated to russian cult brain washing. Twit is pretty much useless at this point. He's being saved by the russian's with a saudi money line for a reason.
Who does he think he is? Miley Cyrus? Well, I suppose he did come in like a wrecking ball.....
On the other hand it could be the case that it's his botty that goes bust if this causes more people to flee what is becoming more and more like a kind of of social media extortion racket.
Every time you think Twitler has hit peak stupid with Twitter, things like this happen.
This has nothing at all to do with bots or anything other than feeding Twitler's ego. He's clearly still upset the world told him to take a hike as CEO, and now he's trying to turn the entire service into a giant simp factory to stroke his ego. The only people who will be able to vote, or have their comments seen by anyone else, will be the people who pay up. And the people who are likely to pay up are Twitler simps. And of course none of this will do anything to stop the massive bleeding at Twitter because Twitler doesn't understand the business at a fundamental level.
And the Reg only picks up some of the biggest stories. I've been reading Twitter is Going Great (inspired by Molly White's terrific Web3 Is Going Great, of course), and there are Just. So. Many. incidental anecdotes of Musk's hypocrisy, lies, and mistakes. Personally, as a Twitter refusenik, I'm finding it all quite entertaining.
There may be a plan here so cunning as to be worthy of Baldrick himself. Clearly the aim is to either convert non-paying twits into paying twits, or drive them off the platform. And why not? They put wear and tear on the servers, sprout endless - often insulting - crap, and don't appeal much to advertisers. Whereas a smaller group of verified users requires less resources, is easier to control, and might well be very attractive to advertisers.
If the endless background of bickering and trolling could be silenced, or at least muffled, the platform might even appeal to people - like me, for eg - who currently wouldn't touch it with a barge pole.
When you've once acquired a pool of users who are willing and able to pay, you can upsell them more features, too.
Of course, it's risky. You might lose so many users that the few who remain aren't profitable enough. But Twitter isn't exactly making money at the moment, is it? Might be worth a try.
"They [non-paying users] [...] don't appeal much to advertisers. Whereas a smaller group of verified users requires less resources, is easier to control, and might well be very attractive to advertisers."
I'm not sure the advertising industry works the way you describe. Sure, a smaller set of targets you already know don't mind wasting a subscription payment is more valuable than a bunch of randoms, but that's the case because, if you can pay for number of ads delivered, you benefit by sending them to good targets alone. If you can't target them, however, you want as many impressions as you can get; a lot of them will ignore it, but the more people see the ad, the more recognition your name has. Cutting the number of users won't lead to celebration in advertising departments. Those who target already have or think they have better ways to identify good prospects than just the people who pay Twitter, and those that don't target appreciate that millions of people see their advert.
Agreed. I've seen quite a few people working in some of my areas, such as software security, claim Twitter is necessary or invaluable or terribly important to their work. I don't believe it. I've never seen anything, found out it had appeared on Twitter earlier, and regretted not seeing it then. It Just Doesn't Matter.