Twitter Disbands Trust and Safety Council

Twitter has all the time been a bit chaotic, however new CEO Elon Musk is taking it to a complete new stage. He is been making dramatic adjustments since he purchased the corporate for $44 billion on Oct. 27, together with shedding half the employees; altering moderation and verification insurance policies; and unbanning extremist accounts.

This is the newest information about Musk’s takeover of Twitter:

Dec 12: Twitter disbands Belief and Security Council

Twitter is dissolving its Belief and Security Council, which included professional organizations who suggested the corporate on points reminiscent of on-line security, harassment, little one sexual exploitation and different essential subjects.

A web page for the council is not out there however an archived version confirmed the council was made up of the Anti-Defamation League, the Heart for Democracy and Know-how, the Trevor Undertaking and extra. The transfer comes after three members of the council resigned due to person security considerations and it raises questions on how Twitter will correctly sort out dangerous content material transferring ahead.

In an e-mail seen by varied media retailers together with CNN and The Washington Publish, Twitter informed members of its Belief and Security Council that it is reassessing the easiest way to “deliver exterior insights” into its “product and coverage growth work.”

“As a part of this course of, we’ve got determined that the Belief and Security Council just isn’t the most effective construction to do that,” the e-mail stated, noting that it is dedicated to security on the platform. Twitter, which not has a communications division, did not instantly reply to a request for remark.

Twitter relaunches subscription service

Twitter relaunched its subscription service Twitter Blue, charging $11 per thirty days for Apple machine customers and $8 per thirty days for individuals who use the net model of the platform. Twitter Blue consists of options reminiscent of a strategy to edit a tweet and a blue checkmark as soon as the corporate critiques the account. The social community handled a flood of imposter accounts when it began revamping its verification system however Twitter made adjustments to assist sort out the issue. A Twitter person’s account have to be at the very least 90 days previous and make sure their cellphone quantity to subscribe to Twitter Blue.

The corporate additionally began rolling out gold badges for companies and plans to determine authorities organizations with grey examine marks. Musk reiterated in a tweet that he plans to eliminate blue examine marks for customers beforehand verified for being notable, lively and genuine in a number of months.

Dec. 10: Twitter Blue to relaunch, with blue examine marks, ‘overview’ course of

In a tweet thread, the social community stated its Twitter Blue subscription service would relaunch on Dec. 12 and that subscribers will get a blue examine mark as soon as their account “has been reviewed.” It did not, nonetheless, give particulars concerning the vetting course of. The social community’s longstanding blue verification badge, that includes a examine mark, was initially designed to point out that verified customers really are who they are saying they’re. And Musk’s need to tie the badge to a paid subscription prompted critics to name the authentication image meaningless. Musk’s technique additionally led to chaos when Twitter Blue was initially relaunched and a few subscribers hid behind the examine marks to impersonate others (together with Musk himself). The service was placed on maintain however will now, apparently, reappear. Extra particulars right here.

Dec. 8: Musk guarantees to inform Twitter customers if they have been shadow banned

Musk stated Thursday the corporate is engaged on a course of to tell Twitter customers whether or not their tweets have been suppressed beneath a course of referred to as shadow banning and allow them to attraction the state of affairs. The announcement got here as journalist Bari Weiss revealed screenshots of firm paperwork suggesting Twitter workers downplayed conservative voices on the platform.

“Twitter is engaged on a software program replace that can present your true account standing,” Musk stated in a tweet on Thursday. “So you recognize clearly in the event you’ve been shadowbanned, the explanation why and the right way to attraction.”

Like different social media websites, Tiwtter has been accused of suppressing sure sorts of political speech on the platform — a apply refered to as shadowbanning, during which a remark or submit is made seen solely to the person who created it.

Dec. 7: Twitter will reportedly enhance Blue pricing on Apple gadgets

Twitter informed workers that it intends to cost $7 a month for its Twitter Blue premium service if subscribers pay for it on-line, in response to The Data. Musk beforehand advised it could price $8 a month.

Nonetheless, the report additionally famous that Twitter Blue would price $11 for individuals who subscribe by way of the iPhone app. The value enhance looks like a response to the 30% minimize Apple takes on iOS purchases.

Neither Apple nor Twitter instantly responded to requests for remark.

Dec. 3: Apple reportedly resumes Twitter advert campaigns

Apple has “absolutely resumed” its promoting on Twitter, in response to Bloomberg. The corporate reportedly spends greater than $100 million to promote on the platform every year. Bloomberg’s report got here after Musk met with Apple boss Tim Prepare dinner, with the Musk additionally tweeting his thanks to advertisers for returning to the location. 

Amazon paused a few of its promoting campaigns on Twitter, in response to tech outlet Platformer’s Zoë Schiffer. however is reportedly planning to increase ad spending on the platform to $100 million yearly.

Neither Twitter nor Apple responded to requests for remark. Amazon declined to remark.

Dec 2: Researchers say hate speech surged on Twitter after Musk takeover

Researchers are pushing again in opposition to Musk’s declare that hate speech has declined on the platform since he bought the corporate.

Tweets containing hateful slurs rose after Musk took over the social media platform on Oct. 27, in response to analysis from the nonprofit Heart for Countering Digital Hate. 

Researchers in contrast the typical each day tweets from the week earlier than Musk’s takeover (Sept. 27 to Oct. 26) to the week as much as Musk’s declare about hate speech falling (Nov. 18 to Nov. 24). A slur used in opposition to Black folks was in 30,546 tweets, triple the speed earlier than Musk’s takeover, the analysis confirmed. Tweets with slurs in opposition to homosexual males, transgender folks, Jewish folks and Latinos additionally elevated throughout that point interval.

Researchers used information from Brandwatch, a social media analytics firm, and the numbers included unique tweets, quote tweets and retweets. The tweets the group analyzed got here from varied locations internationally however included solely these in English. 

Musk disputed the declare on Twitter, posting a chart overlaying Oct. 17 to Nov. 30. He stated information confirmed the variety of hate speech “impressions,” which he outlined because the variety of instances a tweet was considered, has declined. The chart exhibits hate speech impressions at barely greater than 2.5 million on the finish of November. Musk did not present particulars about how Twitter outlined hate speech or the way it measured these impressions. 

Nov. 30: Musk tweets he met with Apple CEO, tries to reassure manufacturers

Musk tweeted that he met with Apple CEO Tim Prepare dinner and toured the iPhone maker’s headquarters. Musk has been criticizing Apple this week, alleging with out providing proof that the corporate censors voices, has a “secret 30% tax” on App Retailer purchases and threatened to withhold Twitter from the App retailer. Apple did not reply to a request for remark about Musk’s tweet. 

“Good dialog,” Musk stated in a separate tweet. “Amongst different issues, we resolved the misunderstanding about Twitter doubtlessly being faraway from the App Retailer. Tim was clear that Apple by no means thought of doing so.”

Musk seems to be attempting to reassure manufacturers that could be cautious about promoting on Twitter. Musk additionally retweeted a Twitter blog post that states model security remains to be one of many firm’s high priorities and none of Twitter’s insurance policies has modified. However the firm has stopped implementing its guidelines in opposition to deceptive COVID-19 data, and Musk has stated he would grant “amnesty” to suspended accounts, permitting them to return to the location if “they haven’t damaged the legislation or engaged in egregious spam.”

EU warns Musk that Twitter faces potential ban

Thierry Breton, the European Union’s commissioner for the interior market, informed Musk that Twitter could possibly be banned within the area or hit with a high-quality of as much as 6% of its world turnover if the corporate would not persist with the EU’s guidelines on content material moderation, in response to the Monetary Instances.

Twitter should adhere to the Digital Providers Act, stated Breton, who apparently informed Musk he should finish his “arbitrary” strategy to reinstating banned customers, should pursue disinformation “aggressively” and should comply with an “in depth impartial audit” of Twitter by subsequent yr. Twitter did not reply to a request for remark.

Breton informed Musk that Twitter had “big work forward” to adjust to European rules, in response to a readout of a video name between the 2 supplied by Breton’s workplace. The Fee is predicted to conduct a “stress take a look at” at Twitter’s headquarters in 2023 “to focus on compliance even forward of authorized deadlines, and to organize for an in depth impartial audit.”

Twitter restores Irish exec to job after court docket intervenes

Sinead McSweeney has been reinstated to her function as Twitter’s world vice chairman for public coverage, the reported.  She received a short lived injunction from Eire’s Excessive Courtroom stopping the corporate from firing her.

McSweeney reasoned that she by no means resigned, however Twitter acted like she was not an worker on the firm after she did not reply to Musk’s Nov. 16 e-mail. The e-mail reportedly demanded that every one employees click on “sure” to confirm their continued employment on the firm. Twitter did not reply to a request for remark.

Nov. 29: COVID-19 misinformation coverage dropped

Like different social media platforms, Twitter spent the previous few years battling deceptive details about COVID-19, whether or not it was about pretend cures or about harmful conspiracy theories relating to vaccines. However Twitter is not implementing its coverage in opposition to deceptive COVID-19 data as of Nov. 23. 

The corporate did so quietly, and the policy update wasn’t noticed for a number of days till CNN, Twitter customers and some different publications seen it. Twitter did not reply to a request for remark and elaboration on the coverage change. 

Twitter Blue rollout reportedly delayed

The launch of tweaked subscription service Twitter Blue has been pushed again, in response to The Verge and Platformer, in an try and keep away from Apple’s 30% minimize of App Retailer purchases. This adopted Musk tweeting criticism of Apple. Twitter did not reply to a request for remark.

Former exec condemns Musk administration type

Yoel Roth, Twitter’s former head of belief and security, stated he left the corporate as a result of he knew Musk’s edict-focused management would finally enable a “catastrophe” like Twitter Blue verification to roll out regardless of his group’s recommendation. Roth warned that the corporate just isn’t secure with Musk at its helm. Roth’s new feedback comply with his Nov. 18 New York Instances op-ed criticizing Musk’s strategy.

Nov. 28: One worker left on little one security group

After widespread layoffs and resignations, a group tasked with figuring out and eradicating little one sexual abuse content material from the location now has just one staffer, in response to Wired. It wasn’t instantly clear how many individuals had been on the group beforehand, however Wired stated it had recognized 4 Singapore-based little one security specialists who stated they left the corporate in November.

The group, primarily based at Twitter’s Asian headquarters in Singapore, is accountable for implementing the corporate’s ban on little one sexual abuse materials — an ongoing and irritating battle for the social community. Twitter, which makes most of its cash from promoting promoting, stated in September it was investigating how adverts from main manufacturers appeared on profiles that had been soliciting or promoting little one sexual abuse content material.

Twitter representatives did not instantly reply to a request for remark.

Congressional Republicans noticed uptick in followers

Within the first few weeks of Musk’s possession of Twitter, a number of high-profile Republican members of Congress noticed their person profiles achieve followers, whereas a few of their Democratic counterparts skilled a decline, in response to an evaluation by The Washington Publish. 

Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Jim Jordan gained greater than 300,000 every, whereas Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Democratic Rep. Adam B. Schiff and impartial Sen. Bernie Sanders all misplaced about 100,000 Twitter followers, the Publish reported. The newspaper stated it could not determine what brought about the change however identified it is in keeping with a development that began when Musk introduced in April his intention to purchase Twitter.

Nov. 27: Twitter flooded with spam that obscured Chinese language COVID-19 protest tweets

Twitter is grappling with spam tweets after protests about COVID-19 restrictions erupted in China.

The Washington Publish and TechCrunch reported that tweets from Chinese language-language Twitter accounts that had been inactive for months began tweeting hyperlinks to escort, porn and playing providers together with names of main Chinese language cities. That meant that when a Twitter person tried to seek for a metropolis in China, their search outcomes had been full of spam and so they had a harder time discovering tweets concerning the protests. The problem comes as Twitter has a smaller group to deal with this drawback. The Washington Publish reported that workers estimate that the corporate’s workforce has been slashed from 7,500 to 2,000 folks.

Researchers have been conserving a detailed eye on the Chinese language spam. Stanford Web Observatory Director Alex Stamos tweeted that his group is engaged on their very own evaluation. 

Nov. 26: Musk notes “We’re recruiting”

Should tweeted a collection of slides late Saturday, the primary of which famous “we’re recruiting” — after weeks of layoffs, resignations and different defections on the firm. Musk once more claimed engagement is surging on Twitter, sharing slides that claimed new signups and lively minutes have lately hit document highs. (The figures could not be independently verified.)  He additionally reiterated his ambitions to make Twitter into an “every part app,” sharing mockups of options like encrypted direct messages, longform tweets and funds.

Musk additionally has personally referred to as the CEOs of main manufacturers that halted promoting on Twitter, in response to the Monetary Instances, which cited an unnamed supply. Different manufacturers lowered their spending to a minimal quite than slicing it off fully as a way to keep away from confrontation with Musk, the FT reported. 

Nov. 25: Colour-coded ‘verified’ examine marks coming Dec. 2

Simply after midnight Friday, Musk tweeted his latest idea for verification, which is about to go reside on Dec. 2. Verify mark badges will are available in three colours: gold for corporations, grey for governments and blue for people “movie star or not.” Musk is lumping each famous people and Twitter Blue subscribers collectively within the blue examine bucket, although people also can have a smaller secondary brand exhibiting “they belong to an org if verified as such by that org,” Musk defined in a follow-up tweet.

Musk has been twiddling with verified examine marks since he took over. He first tried an $8-per-month Twitter Blue subscription that blurred the road between authenticated people and paid accounts, resulting in a slew of individuals impersonating celebrities and firms that brought about mayhem. Then Twitter added gray check marks for “official” accounts of governments, media retailers, enterprise companions and “some public figures,” however then eliminated the checks as the corporate dithered on who would get the “official” label. 

The brand new three-color scheme appears designed to scale back impersonations whereas preserving subscriber income. 

Musk additionally famous that “all verified accounts can be manually authenticated earlier than examine prompts,” although it is unclear whether or not this can be carried out fully by Twitter or if customers can be concerned in authenticating their identification. Twitter didn’t reply to a request for remark. Musk famous {that a} longer clarification can be coming subsequent week.

Later within the day Musk floated the opportunity of creating his personal smartphone if Apple and Google resolve besides Twitter from their respective platforms. “I definitely hope it doesn’t come to that, however, sure, if there is no such thing as a different alternative, I’ll make another cellphone,” he tweeted in a response to a query concerning the situation. 

Musk supplied few different particulars, however the creation of not only a smartphone, however a rival cellular platform that will get across the Apple App Retailer and Google Play Retailer is extremely troublesome, requiring a mixture of customized {hardware} and software program. 

Contemplating how stitched Elon is between Twitter, SpaceX and Tesla, moving into the cellphone enterprise won’t be the most effective concept. 

Nov. 24: Musk publicizes ‘amnesty,’ additionally fires engineers earlier than Thanksgiving

After tweeting a non-scientific poll a day earlier, Musk introduced the outcomes on Thursday. Greater than 72% of three.16 million respondents voted “sure” to the query: “Ought to Twitter provide a common amnesty to suspended accounts, supplied that they haven’t damaged the legislation or engaged in egregious spam?”

“The folks have spoken. Amnesty begins subsequent week. Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” he tweeted Thursday, referencing a Latin phrase that interprets as “voice of the folks, voice of God.”

Individually, Musk could also be within the working for this yr’s Ebenezer Scrooge award after reportedly firing roughly 50 engineers proper earlier than Thanksgiving, in response to tech newsletter Platformer. The e-newsletter was corroborating a report from The Verge that some Twitter engineers received emails on Wednesday saying they’d been fired as a result of their “code just isn’t passable.” Twitter engineers had earlier been informed to ship code samples to Musk. His “hardcore” strategy to work is broadly recognized inside Silicon Valley, together with at his different corporations the place he is demanded “minimal” 40-hour workweeks from employees.

In the meantime, the Monetary Instances reported that Twitter disbanded its workplace in Brussels, Belgium, after leaders there exited the corporate. The FT stated two of the executives had led Twitter’s efforts to adjust to the EU’s Digital Providers Act, which units guidelines round content material moderation, amongst different issues. Others reportedly managed the corporate’s relationship with European regulators.

Twitter did not instantly reply to requests for remark.

Nov. 23: Musk might reinstate extra suspended accounts

Musk floated the thought of providing “a common amnesty to suspended accounts” so long as they have not damaged the legislation or engaged in “egregious spam.”

In a tweet, Musk polled customers concerning the concept. It is unclear what number of accounts this potential change would cowl, however some customers have raised considerations that doing so would end in extra hate speech and different dangerous content material spreading on the platform. 

Musk has been bringing again accounts that Twitter suspended for violating its guidelines in opposition to hateful conduct, COVID misinformation and glorification of violence. He reinstated former US President Donald Trump’s account after polling customers concerning the concept. Twitter suspended Trump after the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill riots as a result of the platform feared his tweets might incite extra violence.  

Nov. 22: Musk faucets iPhone hacker for assist

George Hotz, a hacker recognized for being the primary individual to jailbreak an iPhone in 2007 and founding autonomous driving startup, accepted a 12-week “internship” at Twitter to assist enhance the social media community’s search capabilities. Hotz and Musk have had a sophisticated relationship. Hotz has claimed he turned down a job to work at Tesla, whereas Musk has dismissed the notion that Hotz and might create a greater autonomous driving system than Tesla’s Autopilot. 

In the meantime, Twitter is present process a cost-cutting marketing campaign that The New York Instances studies consists of refusing to pay distributors for excellent payments. The price cuts are focusing on infrastructure, journey bills, software program providers and actual estates, the Instances studies, citing a number of unnamed sources. 

On the similar time, The Washington Publish and trade watchers Pathmatics and Media Issues For America reported that as many as half of Twitter’s high 100 advertisers have both introduced or seemingly stopped spending on the platform. 

Nov. 21: Much more account bans elevate, Musk holds off on paid verification relaunch 

Nonetheless extra once-suspended accounts continued to have their bans lifted. On Nov. 21, US Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s private Twitter account was unlocked, 10 months after being completely suspended for violating Twitter’s COVID misinformation coverage. However amid the parade of restored accounts, Musk claimed one ban will stay in place: Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. 

Later within the day, Musk tweeted that Twitter is “holding off” the relaunch of paid verification by way of its Twitter Blue subscription service till “there’s excessive confidence of stopping impersonation.” Twitter paused the brand new verification system earlier in November after customers who bought the verified blue examine marks posed as main manufacturers, politicians, athletes and different celebrities. Twitter was anticipated to relaunch paid verification on Nov. 29. Musk tweeted that the corporate will most likely use a unique shade examine mark for organizations versus people. 

Nov. 20: Extra suspended accounts revived, World Cup begins

After Musk reversed former US President Donald Trump’s everlasting ban, extra suspended accounts got here again on-line, together with that of Kanye West. Often known as Ye after altering his identify final yr, West tweeted to his 32 million followers for the primary time in two weeks, after he had been locked out for an antisemitic risk. 

Undertaking Veritas, a conservative activist group recognized for hidden-camera movies, was additionally reinstated, after being suspended final yr for disclosing folks’s private data, a cost it denied. 

Individually, the FIFA World Cup kicked off. The occasion sometimes spurs spikes in Twitter utilization, as folks around the globe converge to experience real-time updates and posts associated to its matches. Within the flood of utilization, worries persevered that Twitter could be tripped up by outages and disruptions because it copes with working with a fraction of its standard employees. However the first day of the match appeared to proceed with out Twitter experiencing any main incidents.

Nov. 19: Musk lets Trump again on Twitter

Elon Musk’s long-expected reversal of Trump’s everlasting ban from Twitter got here true, opening the door for the controversial politician to regain his social media megaphone.

Musk had polled customers on Twitter about whether or not Trump must be allowed again onto the platform. The ultimate outcomes of that ballot confirmed 51.8% in favor of reinstating Trump and 48.2% in opposition to.

“The folks have spoken,” Musk tweeted. “Trump can be reinstated.” An account with the acquainted identify @realDonaldTrump confirmed up on the location. Twitter, like different social networks, had booted Trump after the lethal Jan. 6 Capitol Hill riots.

Individually, Bloomberg reported that Musk is contemplating firing extra workers on the gross sales and partnership aspect. He reportedly requested leaders, together with Robin Wheeler, the pinnacle of gross sales and advertising, to fireplace extra workers. Wheeler refused and misplaced her job (she lists herself as an ex-Twitter gross sales exec on her profile). 

Twitter, which has laid off its communications division, did not reply to a query despatched to its press e-mail.

Nov. 18: Musk asks engineers to return to the workplace. Beforehand banned accounts get reinstated

Twitter workers had been locked out of the corporate’s headquarters, however Musk reportedly despatched an e-mail asking for some software program engineers to go again into the workplace, in response to Bloomberg. Musk requested the coders to satisfy with him and supply examples of their coding work as a way to assist him higher perceive the software program. 

Musk tweeted concerning the firm’s coverage on speech saying sure tweets won’t have “freedom of attain.”

“Adverse/hate tweets can be max deboosted & demonetized, so no adverts or different income to Twitter,” he stated. “You will not discover the tweet until you particularly search it out, which is not any completely different from remainder of web.”


Screenshot by CNET

Musk adopted that tweet with one other saying conservative media persona Jordan Peterson, right-wing satire website The Babylon Bee and comic Kathy Griffin may have their banned accounts reinstated. Twitter booted Peterson and The Babylon Bee from the platform earlier within the yr over anti-trans tweets whereas Griffin had her account suspended final week for altering it right into a Musk parody account. 

Musk additionally tweeted that Twitter hasn’t decided relating to former President Donald Trump’s account, however Yoel Roth, the previous head of belief and security at Twitter, stated in a New York Instances opinion piece revealed Nov. 18 that the ex-president’s reinstatement was “close to certainty.” Twitter banned Trump from its platform in 2021 due to considerations his remarks might spark extra violence after the lethal Jan. 6 Capitol Hill riot. 

Roth, who resigned from the corporate, wrote how Musk referred to as for extra censoring of tweets after a surge of hate speech confirmed up on the platform following his takeover. He additionally went on to clarify the necessity for content material moderation was not solely essential to maintain advertisers blissful, but it surely additionally was wanted to appease app retailer house owners and authorities entities, such because the European Union, which have legal guidelines in opposition to hate speech. 

In a 24-hour ballot on Twitter, Musk requested customers if Trump’s account must be reinstated.

Twitter customers are nonetheless anxious concerning the platform’s potential demise, particularly forward of high-traffic occasions such because the FIFA World Cup that kicks off on Nov. 20. The New York Instances, citing three folks near the corporate, reported that some estimates confirmed that at the very least 1,200 workers resigned on Nov. 17 after Musk gave them a alternative to remain or depart. 

Consumer security is one other huge concern on Twitter. CNN reporter Oliver Darcy tweeted that the White House is asking Twitter to clarify the way it’s safeguarding “the protection of People’ on-line information.” The White Home did not instantly reply to a request for remark.

Nov. 17: Twitter customers worry finish is close to. Musk locks workplace doorways. Many workers take severance. Senators need investigation

Twitter customers began tweeting farewell remarks as #RIPTwitter trended on the platform within the US and different components of the world. 

Fears a couple of potential collapse of the location got here after a whole bunch of workers determined to depart the corporate earlier within the day. One former Twitter worker informed The Washington Publish that there is no longer a “skeleton crew manning the system.” 

Twitter “will proceed to coast till it runs into one thing, after which it’ll cease,” the worker stated. 

Musk tweeted a meme with Twitter’s brand on a headstone. 

The remaining 3,500 or so workers who had been left at Twitter after 1000’s had been laid off had a option to make on the finish of the day on Nov. 17: Stay beneath Musk’s plan for an intense “Twitter 2.0” or depart with three months of severance pay.

As much as 75% of remaining workers selected the exit, in response to Fortune and Bloomberg, creating confusion about what number of remaining folks would have entry to the workplaces. The Verge reported that those that left included some “legendary” engineers and coders.

Across the similar time, the corporate apparently locked the doorways to its San Francisco headquarters till Nov. 21, in response to tech newsletter Platformer

Twitter, which can not have a public relations division, did not reply to a request for remark.

All of this occurred after Musk softened his stance on how he needed to run the brand new Twitter, at the very least considerably. An e-mail despatched to Twitter workers on Nov. 9 stated distant work can be banned, however an e-mail to workers on Nov. 17 acknowledged that distant work is feasible if authorized, in response to a report from Bloomberg. 

“All that’s required for approval is that your supervisor takes duty for guaranteeing that you’re making a wonderful contribution,” Musk stated within the e-mail. He additionally desires workers to have in-person group conferences at the very least as soon as a month. 

Twitter can be going through extra scrutiny from US lawmakers.  A bunch of Democratic senators despatched a letter to Lina Khan, the chairwoman of the US Federal Commerce Fee. Outlined within the letter are what the legislators described as “alarming steps” taken by Musk together with new options which have been utilized by scammers, a rise in hate speech and the elimination of cybersecurity executives throughout the firm, doubtlessly placing customers’ private information in danger. 

The senators level out that these actions might place the corporate in violation of the FTC’s consent decree to guard this information as a part of a settlement with the fee in 2011. 

“We urge the Fee to vigorously oversee its consent decree with Twitter and to deliver enforcement actions in opposition to any breaches or enterprise practices which are unfair or misleading, together with bringing civil penalties and imposing legal responsibility on particular person Twitter executives the place applicable,” the senators stated. 

Among the many seven senators who signed the letter are Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Cory Booker of New Jersey. 

Twitter violated the consent decree in Might when the FTC discovered the corporate used safety information like cellphone numbers and e-mail addresses to focus on promoting at customers. This led to a $150 million settlement paid by Twitter.

Musk appeared to finish the day poking enjoyable at his earlier warning that Twitter could go bankrupt.

Twitter has not responded to a number of requests for remark.

Nov. 16: Musk calls for ‘hardcore’ work tradition. Dorsey’s ‘nope’

Musk emailed all employees to outline his vision for “Twitter 2.0,” which would require an “extraordinarily hardcore” tradition, with lengthy hours and excessive depth, in response to Pragmatic Engineer author (and former Uber engineer) Gergely Orosz. Staff should comply with this on Thursday or depart with three months of severance pay. 

Throughout testimony Wednesday over a Tesla shareholder case alleging that his wage as CEO is extreme, Musk additionally reportedly informed the court docket that he doesn’t need to be CEO of Tesla, and that his chief government management of Twitter is a short lived association.

“I count on to scale back my time at Twitter and discover any person else to run Twitter over time,” he stated, in response to CNBC.

Twitter did not reply to a request for remark.

When a follower requested Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey if he’d take into account returning as CEO, Dorsey responded with a agency “nope.” There isn’t any indication that he received a suggestion to return — the follower’s question got here after Dorsey engaged in dialog about Twitter’s future and expressed confidence that the location would survive. His earlier tenure as CEO led to Might 2021, and he left its board of administrators in Might 2022. 

Nov. 15: Employees fired for talking about Musk on Slack

Staff who criticized Elon Musk in Twitter’s Slack channels were fired overnight via email, Platformer’s Casey Newton stated in a tweet. They had been apparently informed their “latest conduct has violated firm coverage.” It is unclear how many individuals had been affected.

Twitter did not reply to a request for remark.

Nov. 14: Musk desires higher Twitter video assist

Talking by way of video hyperlink, Musk informed enterprise leaders throughout the G20 summit in Bali that he desires to see Twitter assist extra longer-form video to herald extra content material creators. He additionally famous that he is been working “on the absolute most quantity … from morning til evening, seven days every week” for the reason that acquisition.

Nov. 13: SpaceX reportedly buys main Twitter advert package deal

SpaceX, Musk’s aerospace firm, ordered a Twitter “takeover” promoting package deal for its satellite tv for pc web service Starlink, CNBC reported. This may seemingly promote the service on folks’s Twitter timelines in Spain and Australia and might price greater than $250,000. It comes after some advertisers paused campaigns because of the upheaval at Twitter. 

SpaceX did not reply to a request for remark.

Nov. 12: Hundreds of contract workers seemingly terminated

Twitter minimize 1000’s of contract workers, in response to Platformer’s Casey Newton, Axios and CNBC, with Newton reporting that round 4,400 of Twitter’s roughly 5,500 contractors had been affected. Most did not get any discover and came upon as a result of they misplaced entry to the corporate’s e-mail and inside communications programs, Newton reported.

The corporate did not reply to a request for remark.

Nov. 11: Twitter Blue subscription possibility vanishes

The choice to join the $8 a month subscription service Twitter Blue is not out there on Twitter’s iOS app, as earlier reported by The Verge. The shift comes days after the service launched for Apple gadgets and previous to its Android launch. Making an attempt to subscribe on desktop directs you to the iOS app.

CNET can affirm that this manifests in two distinct methods: the choice to subscribe has vanished from the sidebar, and tapping the hyperlink offers you an error message. 

A Twitter Blue error against a blue and black background on an iOS version of the app

Attempting to subscribe to Twitter Blue on the iOS app resulted on this message on Nov. 11.

Twitter/Screenshot by CNET

“Thanks on your curiosity!” it reads. “Twitter Blue can be out there in your nation sooner or later. Please examine again later.”

It is unclear why the corporate paused signups for the service, however a lot of customers reportedly purchased verification to impersonate brands and celebrities. An internal note posted on Slack stated it stopped folks from subscribing “to assist tackle impersonation points,” in response to Platformer’s Zoë Schiffer.

Twitter did not reply to CNET’s request for remark.

Nov. 10: Musk bans distant work and warns of chapter, lawyer says he is risking billions in FTC fines

Musk despatched his first emails to workers on Nov. 9, warning that “the financial image forward is dire.” He banned distant work until he personally authorized it, in response to Bloomberg, whereas The New York Instances reported that he informed employees “absolutely the high precedence is discovering and suspending any verified bots/trolls/spam.”

An lawyer on Twitter’s privateness group posted a message within the firm’s Slack warning that Musk’s give attention to monetizing its customers is making him take harmful steps, The Verge reported. It is apparently at explicit danger of incurring billions in fines from the Federal Commerce Fee within the wake of a Might settlement relating to using private information to focus on adverts.

Twitter’s chief privateness officer, Damien Kieran; Chief Data Safety Officer Lea Kissner; and Chief Compliance Officer Marianne Fogarty all resigned, The Verge famous. Kissner’s departure confirmed her departure in a tweet.

Musk additionally reportedly informed workers chapter was a chance, Bloomberg reported, citing an individual aware of the matter. Two extra Twitter executives — Yoel Roth, the corporate’s head of belief and security, and Robin Wheeler, who led advertising and gross sales at Twitter — additionally resigned, in response to the report. Wheeler then determined to remain on the firm after Musk persuaded her to take action, Bloomberg reported. Roth, Wheeler and Musk’s lawyer Alex Spiro did not reply to a request for remark. 

Nov. 9: Musk tries to reassure advertisers amid confusion about examine marks

Twitter’s rollout of a new verification system is messy. Twitter began including grey examine marks and an “official” label to high-profile Twitter accounts however then scrapped a few of the adjustments hours later.

In an hour-long reside audio chat on Twitter later within the day, Musk stated the brand new labels are an “aesthetic nightmare when trying on the Twitter feed” and “one other approach of making a two-class system.” 

Esther Crawford, who oversees early-stage merchandise at Twitter, tweeted that the corporate would nonetheless be rolling out the “official” label however to authorities and industrial entities first. Twitter additionally began permitting folks so as to add blue examine marks to their profiles in the event that they pay $8 a month for a Twitter Blue subscription. Scammers are already utilizing the brand new system to create pretend accounts. Twitter stated it could droop accounts engaged in misleading ways and impersonation.

Within the audio chat, Musk mentioned Twitter’s plans for a content material moderation council and choices by corporations to quickly pause their promoting campaigns on Twitter.

“I do not assume having hate speech subsequent to an advert is nice. Clearly,” he stated. Musk additionally stated he thinks it’ll take Twitter a few months to create a content material moderation council. 

He signaled, although, that he is not planning to decelerate in terms of altering Twitter. 

“The speed of evolution of Twitter can be an immense step change in comparison with what it has been up to now,” he stated. “You understand, if nothing else, I’m a technologist and I could make know-how go quick.”

Nov. 6: Paid examine marks could also be pushed again, Musk cracks down on impersonation

Paid verification reportedly delayed till after election

Twitter is suspending the rollout of verification badges linked to an $8 month-to-month subscription service till after the midterm elections, in response to The New York Instances.

Impersonators get the boot

Musk warned that any Twitter account participating in impersonation with out clearly specifying that it is parody would get hit with a everlasting ban. In response, some customers modified their names to “Elon Musk,” which led to their suspension.

Nov. 5: Paying for examine marks, listening to from Dorsey

Pay-for-verification plan exhibits up in iOS replace

Model notes for the newest iteration of Twitter’s app for the Apple iPhone confirmed up within the App Retailer, with a What’s New part that pointed to the verification function. The notes inform customers that “beginning at this time” in the event you “enroll now” for an $8-a-month Twitter Blue subscription, “your account will get a blue examine mark, identical to the celebrities, corporations, and politicians you already comply with.” It seems, although, that this system hasn’t really kicked in but. Learn extra right here.

Dorsey weighs in

With information studies saying Twitter had laid off about half its employees, co-founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey took to the service to supply phrases of encouragement and to position blame on himself.

“I personal the duty for why everyone seems to be on this state of affairs: I grew the corporate dimension too rapidly. I apologize for that,” Dorsey tweeted. He additionally referred to as Twitter staffers previous and current “resilient” and said, “I’m grateful for, and love, everybody who has ever labored on Twitter. I do not count on that to be mutual on this second.”

In April, Dorsey expressed his assist of Musk taking on the corporate, however he additionally stated that in precept, he thought nobody ought to personal or run Twitter and that it ought to as an alternative be “a public good.”

Nov. 4: Musk says Twitter has had ‘large drop’ in income

Since Musk’s takeover, a number of main advertisers, reminiscent of Tesla rival Basic Motors, meals firm Basic Mills and pharmaceutical company Pfizer, have quickly paused their advert campaigns on Twitter. Musk tweeted that Twitter has had a “large drop” in income, which he blamed on activist teams pressuring advertisers. Musk did not say in his tweet how a lot Twitter’s income has fallen, nor did he determine the activists. Within the tweet, Musk additionally stated Twitter hasn’t modified its content material moderation insurance policies. 

Musk additionally made an look on the Baron Funding Convention, the place he famous that Twitter grappled with income challenges earlier than the acquisition and that he tried to get out of the deal.

His remarks got here after Twitter began shedding workers. Musk later tweeted that there was “no alternative when the corporate is shedding over $4M/day.” With out specifying how many individuals had been laid off or what share of the workforce, Musk added they had been “supplied 3 months of severance.” Reportedly, about half of Twitter’s 7,500-person work drive was laid off.

Civil rights teams that met with Musk spoke out concerning the layoffs.

“For starters, there is no strategy to preserve election integrity in place if you’re slicing capability to do the monitoring in #TwitterLayoffs,” tweeted Rashad Robinson, president of racial justice group Colour of Change. The group is a part of #StopToxicTwitter, a coalition of greater than 60 organizations which are urging main advertisers to pause spending and put money into content material moderation. Companions listed on the coalition’s web site embody the Anti-Defamation League, the NAACP, Public Citizen, and the Union of Involved Scientists.

The Volkswagen Group and others reportedly paused advert spending due to considerations that adverts might seem alongside problematic content material on the platform.

Nov. 3: Musk seems for tactics to chop prices, lawsuit filed

Musk desires to chop prices and make Twitter much less depending on promoting. 

Reuters, citing two sources aware of the matter and an inside Slack message, reported that Musk directed Twitter’s group to seek out greater than $1 billion in infrastructure price financial savings.

The corporate is taking a look at different methods to earn money exterior of promoting, together with “paywalled” movies and paid direct messages, The New York Instances reported, citing two folks with data of the matter and inside paperwork.

Musk is already making adjustments to Twitter’s work tradition. Bloomberg reported that Musk has eliminated “days of relaxation” from Twitter’s worker calendars and plans to cancel the corporate’s distant work coverage. Twitter did not reply to a request for remark.

Twitter reportedly informed workers in an e-mail that layoffs would occur. A lawsuit searching for class motion standing, accused Twitter of violating the federal Employee Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act, which requires massive corporations to present at the very least 60 days of advance discover earlier than mass layoffs, as beforehand reported by Bloomberg.

Nov. 2: Musk reportedly plans to chop half of Twitter’s workforce

Musk plans to chop about 3,700 jobs at Twitter, or half of the social media firm’s workforce, Bloomberg reported. Affected staffers are to be told of their destiny by Nov. 4, sources informed the information outlet.

Musk additionally plans to reverse the corporate’s current work-from-anywhere coverage, requiring remaining workers to report back to an workplace, the unidentified sources stated.

In a single situation for decreasing Twitter’s workforce being thought of, laid off employees can be supplied 60 days’ value of severance pay. Twitter customers have been bracing for layoffs since Musk introduced his bid for Twitter in April. One report indicated that Musk deliberate to chop 75% of jobs at Twitter.

Nov. 1: Musk suggests charging for verification

In a collection of tweets, Musk floated the concept that Twitter cost $8 per thirty days for a verified blue examine mark as a part of its subscription plan. The corporate’s subscription service, referred to as Twitter Blue, at the moment prices $5 per thirty days however would not embody verification as a perk.

Twitter at the moment would not cost to confirm accounts with a blue examine mark, and the badge is meant to be given out to accounts that the corporate determines are “notable, genuine and lively.” The blue examine mark is supposed to assist customers decide if an account of a star, journalist or different public determine is pretend or not.

Musk tweeted that the value can be adjusted by nation and that the subscription would come with “precedence in replies, mentions & search, which is important to defeat spam/rip-off,” in addition to the “means to submit lengthy video & audio.” He additionally stated customers would see “half as many adverts.” 

Earlier within the day, The Wall Avenue Journal reported that Twitter Blue subscribers will lose entry to ad-free articles from publishers like Vox, the Los Angeles Instances and Insider. There have been varied studies of various costs for a Twitter Blue subscription, with the corporate additionally reportedly having thought of rising the subscription value to $20 a month.

It is unclear from Musk’s tweets if verified customers must pay for a subscription or lose their blue examine mark. Musk tweeted there can be “a secondary tag” for public figures, just like the one now used for politicians.

The corporate’s chief buyer officer, Sarah Personette, additionally revealed in a tweet that she resigned.

In the meantime, Twitter stated it has eliminated 1,500 accounts since Oct. 29 for posting hateful content material.

Oct. 31: Official CEO, board dissolved, layoff plans, no Trump choice but, content material moderation restricted

Days after naming himself “Chief Twit” on his Twitter profile, Musk confirmed he is the corporate’s CEO by way of a securities submitting. Different adjustments to Twitter’s management are additionally underway. A associated securities submitting exhibits Twitter’s board of administrators was dissolved the day Musk took over and recognized Musk because the “sole director” of the corporate. 

He additionally reportedly plans to put off 25% of Twitter’s workforce, The Washington Publish reported, citing nameless sources. 

Musk, who has beforehand stated he would reverse former US President Donald Trump’s everlasting ban from Twitter, remains to be getting questions on whether or not he’ll comply with by way of on that. Twitter booted Trump from its platform in 2021 following the lethal US Capitol Hill riot due to considerations that his remarks might incite extra violence. 

“If I had a greenback for each time somebody requested me if Trump is coming again on this platform, Twitter can be minting cash!” Musk tweeted

Twitter additionally restricted some Belief and Security worker entry to inside instruments, Bloomberg reported, curbing their means to reasonable content material and tackle misinformation forward of subsequent week’s US elections. They’ll apparently nonetheless edit or take away posts that would end in real-world hurt.

“That is precisely what we (or any firm) must be doing within the midst of a company transition to scale back alternatives for insider danger. We’re nonetheless implementing our guidelines at scale,” Yoel Roth, Twitter’s head of security and integrity, tweeted in response to Bloomberg’s story.

Oct. 30: Musk toys with examine mark adjustments and Vine revival, tweets misinformation

Musk has been busy suggesting adjustments to Twitter. He tweeted a ballot about whether or not Twitter ought to deliver again Vine, a short-form video app that Twitter shut down in 2017. 

Twitter additionally reportedly plans to cost $20 per thirty days for its Twitter Blue subscription service, and verified customers would lose their blue examine mark if they do not accomplish that in 90 days, The Verge reported, citing nameless sources. Platformer’s Casey Newton reported that Twitter is considering charging $5 a month to verified customers in the event that they need to preserve their blue examine marks.

Musk additionally tweeted after which deleted a hyperlink to an article with a baseless conspiracy concept about final week’s assault on Paul Pelosi, the husband of US Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in San Francisco. The article got here from an internet site referred to as the Santa Monica Observer. Reality-checking web site Media Bias/Reality Verify famous the outlet publishes right-wing misinformation. 

Oct. 29: Twitter battles a surge in racist slurs

Twitter is attempting to fight nameless accounts that began to tweet racist slurs hours after Musk took over Twitter. 

Twitter head of security and integrity Yoel Roth tweeted that the corporate has “seen a small variety of accounts submit a ton of tweets that embody slurs and different derogatory phrases.” He added that “greater than 50,000 tweets repeatedly utilizing a selected slur got here from simply 300 accounts.”

“Backside line up entrance: Twitter’s insurance policies have not modified. Hateful conduct has no place right here. And we’re taking steps to place a cease to an organized effort to make folks assume we’ve got,” he tweeted.

Oct. 28: Twitter to type content material moderation council

Advocacy teams have raised considerations that Musk’s management over Twitter would enable extra hate speech and misinformation to floor on the platform. Musk has vowed publicly he would not need Twitter to turn into a “free-for-all hellscape” however has additionally stated that he is “in opposition to censorship that goes far past the legislation.”

Musk stated the corporate would type a content material moderation council with “broadly numerous viewpoints.” The corporate will not make any main content material choices or account reinstatements earlier than the council convenes, he tweeted.

A securities submitting on Oct. 28 additionally famous that Twitter’s inventory is being delisted on the New York Inventory Alternate. Twitter, a publicly traded firm, grew to become a non-public one. 

Oct. 27: Musk takes over Twitter, fires executives

Musk grew to become Twitter’s new proprietor and reportedly fired key executives on the firm, together with Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal, CFO Ned Segal and Vijaya Gadde, Twitter’s head of authorized coverage, belief and security.

Earlier within the day, Musk tweeted a letter to advertisers. The billionaire, who as soon as tweeted that he hated promoting, now posted that “promoting, when carried out proper, can delight, entertain and inform you.” 

Musk met with workers all through the week, carried a sink into Twitter’s headquarters as a photograph op and adjusted his profile to “Chief Twit” earlier than information broke that the deal had been accomplished.

CNET employees contributed to this report.

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