OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
Twitter CEO Elon Musk has provided a critical update on the status of advertisers on the platform after dozens appeared to bail on him since his purchase went through last month.
Importantly, Musk indicated that at least some were returning to Twitter.
“Just a note to thank advertisers for returning to Twitter,” he tweeted on Saturday.
Just a note to thank advertisers for returning to Twitter
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 4, 2022
Also Saturday, Musk poked some fun at major media outlets who predicted that the platform would simply die after he took it over.
“Twitter servers are running at Warp 9!!” he noted.
Twitter servers are running at Warp 9!! pic.twitter.com/vtZZeKupC7
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 3, 2022
Last week, Musk took to his platform to say that tech behemoth Apple had pulled its advertising, but then, a few days later, he noted that after a meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook, the issue had been cleared up.
“Thanks @tim_cook for taking me around Apple’s beautiful HQ,” he said in a tweet showing scenery from the tech giant’s headquarters.
“Good conversation. Among other things, we resolved the misunderstanding about Twitter potentially being removed from the App Store. Tim was clear that Apple never considered doing so,” he said.
Thanks @tim_cook for taking me around Apple’s beautiful HQ pic.twitter.com/xjo4g306gR
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 30, 2022
Previously, Musk announced that Apple had mostly stopped advertising on Twitter, which would make it one of the most high-profile companies to pull ads from the social media platform.
“Apple has mostly stopped advertising on Twitter. Do they hate free speech in America?,” Musk said in a tweet. He later tagged Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook’s Twitter account in another tweet, asking “what’s going on here?”
“The move aligns the iPhone maker with a rising list of firms from General Mills Inc to luxury automaker Audi of America that have stopped or paused advertising on Twitter since the billionaire’s $44 billion buyout last month,” Reuters reported.
“Musk said ‘yes’ in response to a user question on whether Apple was threatening Twitter’s presence in the App Store or making moderation demands. Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment,” the outlet added.
Musk continues to make changes to the platform, including unbanning previously suspended users and implementing free speech policies, and laying down the law, so to speak.
On Sunday, for instance, he warned a key figure in then-President Donald Trump’s first impeachment that he could be subject to enforcement action for violating the platform’s terms of service.
Musk responded to a post from former National Security Council figure and retired Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, who posted: “Kinda weird that @elonmusk gets to decide how like a half-billion people communicate. Way too much power for one erratic individual to wield, don’t you think?”
Almost immediately, other users pointed out that Vindman tweeted the same message as many other accounts.
BLEEP BLOOP KINDA WEIRD THAT @ELONMUSK GETS TO DECIDE HOW LIKE A HALF-BILLION PEOPLE COMMUNICATE BLEEP. WAY TOO MUCH POWER FOR ONE ERRATIC INDIVIDUAL TO WEILD, DON’T YOU THINK BLOOP? pic.twitter.com/IB4qfuTZM8
— Noam Blum (@neontaster) November 27, 2022
That led Musk to respond: “They’re bots in human form,” while adding this warning: “Note, spamming, whether done by a set of humans or bots is against ToS.”
He then wrote: “Vindman is both puppet & puppeteer. Question is who pulls his strings … ?”
Another user noted, “And they’re all echoing Alexander Vindman.”
That led Musk to reply: “Like digital ventriloquist dolls.”
“Hating on elon musk full time seems like a really pathetic hobby,” added another user.
The Twitter boss replied: “They won’t give up controlling the narrative easily.”
Last week, Musk was attacked by left-wing actress and activist Alyssa Milano, who was herself mightily ratioed after posting her comment.
“I gave back my Tesla. I bought the VW ev. I love it,” she wrote, in reference to a Volkswagen model electric vehicle.
“I’m not sure how advertisers can buy space on Twitter. Publicly traded company’s products being pushed in alignment with hate and white supremacy doesn’t seem to be a winning business model,” she added.
I gave back my Tesla.
I bought the VW ev.
I love it.
I’m not sure how advertisers can buy space on Twitter. Publicly traded company’s products being pushed in alignment with hate and white supremacy doesn’t seem to be a winning business model.
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) November 26, 2022
The Hodge Twins quickly replied with a brutal fact check and a history lesson.
“Volkswagen was literally founded by the Nazi’s and Hitler,” they wrote, to which Musk responded with the 100 emoji and laughing emoji.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 26, 2022
For its part, the automaker has acknowledged its Nazi-era founding on its website under “history,” noting that the car company’s origins were as a “Nazi prestige project.”