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Elon Musk Takes the Lead over Twitter with Harsh Move

Barbara Bene 2022.11.02.

Elon Musk decided to fire the entire board of Twitter and took sole control as director, reported The Telegraph. The article added that the new owner of the platform wants big changes at the company.

Elon Musk dissolved the Twitter board after buying the social media platform for around $44 billion. The decision was made after Musk ordered the board to work 24/7 to figure out how to make celebrity and influencer users pay more for the blue check-mark logo, a status symbol.

Very popular Twitter accounts with many followers often have a small blue circle with a white check-mark, indicating that these famous people are indeed the ones who genuinely manage the account and that they have already gone through a verification process. This status symbol used to be given for free to celebrities, brands, journalists, and influencers.

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However, Musk wants people to pay eight dollars a month if they want the blue tick to remain by their name indicating the verified account. According to Elon Musk,

this move was “essential to defeat spam/scams.”

The new owner also plans to change the process by which Twitter verifies its users. According to reports, Musk has asked his employees to have the new service ready by November 7 or he will fire them.

However, these are not the only changes Musk has planned. In fact, he wants to reinstate accounts that were previously blocked by Twitter. This means that former US President Donald Trump, who was banned from Twitter after the January 6, 2021 riots, could also return to the platform.

Musk has previously announced that he wants to make room for free speech on Twitter.

As part of this, he recently said he would create a “content moderation council,” where members would represent different political views. This will be used to restore accounts that have been blocked.

In the past, it was not unprecedented for the hard-liberal Twitter to block accounts belonging to the conservative political side with which it disagreed, or when it did not like the other side’s views.

Two years ago, the Hungarian government had to face a similar case: in 2020, Twitter blocked the official account of the Hungarian government, About Hungary, without any prior warning or explanation.

Commenting on the case back then, Zoltán Kovács, Secretary of State for International Communications and Relations, said that it was extremely interesting in light of the fact that the European Commission had just published its first rule of law report around that time. Kovács also spoke out last year saying that in an “arbitrary move,” Twitter had blocked 200 of his followers “overnight” without any explanation or notification in advance.

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But it was not only the Hungarian government’s account that fell victim to Twitter’s campaign. The account of Remix News, which covers the Visegrád Four countries, was also suspended in autumn 2020, just days after the Hungarian government’s account. Twitter told Euronews at the time that action had been taken against @RMXNews under their policy on platform manipulation and spam policy.

Another conservative website, the Babylon Bee was also locked out of its Twitter account this March because the social media platform accused the website of violating its rules against hateful content. Twitter’s problem was a post by the Babylon Bee which jokingly named Biden administration official Dr. Rachel Levine the Bee’s 2022 “Man of the Year”. Dr. Levine is actually a transgender woman who was born as a man.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán also created a Twitter account this October, and so far his account has not been suspended. After the first day of being on the platform, he made a snarky tweet about Donald Trump being blocked on Twitter.

Featured photo via Pixabay

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