Tag Archive for ‘Elon Musk’

Twitter Rebranded as ‘X’ ➝

I think this is a foolish change. “X” just feels so incredibly generic when compared to “Twitter”. Not to mention the terms “tweet” and “retweet” being tied to the Twitter brand identity.

But it’s interesting to see so many people for whom Twitter is “dead to them” get so riled up about this. Perhaps their nine months of bickering was more of an attempt to convince themselves.

➝ Source: macrumors.com

Twitter Begins Removing Blue Checkmarks From Legacy Verified Users ➝

Jon Porter, writing for The Verge:

Twitter has begun removing blue checkmarks en masse from legacy verified accounts, fulfilling one of owner Elon Musk’s long-stated plans for the social media network. 

The change is apparent on Twitter accounts for several Verge writers and other journalists like LA Times reporter Matt Pearce, with the verification logos occasionally disappearing and reappearing between page reloads.

Twitter continues to be an excellent source of comedic entertainment.

➝ Source: theverge.com

Twitter to Charge for API ➝

A great collection of reactions to the news of Twitter charging for API access. Elon sure is rocking the boat for third-party developers with this. As far as I can tell, there aren’t any additional details about pricing at all, but I’m hoping there will still be some amount of access for free — even if it’s only for accounts with sufficient verification.

➝ Source: mjtsai.com

The Active User Narrative

Mastodon Project Website

Josh Nicholas, writing for the Guardian:

The number of active users on the Mastodon social network has dropped more than 30% since the peak and is continuing a slow decline, according to the latest data posted on its website. There were about 1.8 million active users in the first week of January, down from over 2.5 million in early December.

The article is titled “Elon Musk Drove More Than a Million People to Mastodon – but Many Aren’t Sticking Around” and the paragraph above is the lede. It paints a dire picture for Mastodon.

But then we get to this bit:

There were about 500,000 active Mastodon users before Elon Musk took control of Twitter at the end of October. By mid-November, that number climbed to almost 2 million active users.

Wait. Over the past three months, Mastodon went from 500,000 users to 1.8 million and they’re spinning this as a bad thing because it didn’t continue to climb or maintain its peak? That’s completely absurd.

There are going to be peaks and valleys. And you can’t expect any social network to maintain its peak number of active user when there’s a massive surge like this. Anyone could have told you that it wouldn’t last. But the important point isn’t that it didn’t maintain its peak. The important point is that the number of Mastodon users has grown 260% in three months.

That’s a tremendous accomplishment. And not just for Mastodon, but for ActivityPub, open source, and the health of the open web. That should be the lede.

Matt Hauger shared a couple of graphs charting Mastodon’s active user numbers. And it illustrates how the state of things looks drastically different depending on where the timeframe begins. And while I agree with him that I’d prefer to see the trend line curving upward, I think it’s dishonest to frame the situation with such a pessimistic bend like Josh Nicholas has.

When I first joined Twitter in 2007, there were less than 700,000 accounts on the platform. I have no idea how many of those were active — I could only find numbers that went back to 2010 — but given how early it was and the total user count, I would guess that the monthly active user number wasn’t too far off from the 500,000 that we had on Mastodon in October.

Compared to Twitter, Mastodon has a much higher barrier to entry. The competition is far more established than it was when Twitter launched and they don’t have the benefit of millions of dollars of venture capital to spur growth.

But here’s the thing, although I would love to see Mastodon and other ActivityPub-based services grow, I understand that what is already there is great. I had fun on Twitter in 2007 and I’m having a ton of fun on Mastodon now.

Mastodon doesn’t need to maintain the explosive growth it’s had in the wake of Elon acquiring Twitter. And for the long-term health of the network, it would be better for Mastodon to grow slowly, allowing developers to tackle the inevitable scaling issues with a steadier hand.

And it should go without saying, but it needs to be said — Twitter doesn’t have to fail in order for Mastodon to succeed.

Twitter Files Archive ➝

It’s not easy to find all of the Twitter threads associated with these releases. And even when you do, they’re not particularly enjoyable to read on Twitter — broken up into tweet-length messages like they are. This is much nicer.

(Via Michael Tsai.)

➝ Source: twitterfiles.co

Elon Musk Is Tackling Twitter’s Sexually Exploited Children Problem ➝

Whether you think Elon is destroying Twitter with his other decisions or not, it seems obvious that this change is objectively good.

➝ Source: newsweek.com

Elon Musk’s Twitter Acquisition Hangs on Whether the Platform Can Prove Its Spam Numbers ➝

I suspect the deal will still go through, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the price is a smidge lower than the initial offer.

As an aside, I receive significantly more interaction on Mastodon than I do on Twitter. And that’s with only about 60% of the followers. I’m sure that my experience isn’t representative of Twitter as a whole, but it seems like there are a lot of dormant accounts or accounts that don’t interact with the tweets in their timeline.

That’s not to say they’re a bunch of bot accounts, but of the monthly active users in my circle on Twitter, a good number of them don’t seem to be active at all.

➝ Source: reclaimthenet.org

Twitter Purchase on Hold Pending Investigation Into Spam Bots ➝

Cindy Harper, writing for Reclaim the Net:

Elon Musk’s bid for Twitter is currently “on hold,” the Tesla CEO announced on the platform, while an investigation takes place to determine the number of bots/spam accounts represented on the platform.

In a filing this month, Twitter alleged that less than 5% of its daily active users were fake or spam accounts.

Musk appears to want to ensure that this is indeed accurate.

How wild would it be if a significant portion of Twitter’s user base is just spam and bot accounts and they’ve been lying about it to investors?

➝ Source: reclaimthenet.org