Elon Musk is about to end his career as CEO of Twitter.
After indiscriminately banning links, putting his site at odds with both The Washington Post‘s Taylor Lorenz and his own supporters, such as Silicon Valley venture capitalist Paul Graham, Elon Musk’s doxxing, banning and moderation outburst ended – predictably – with an apology and a promise that it “will not happen again”.
His $44 billion takeover of the company — which he desperately and unsuccessfully tried to get out of — began with a poll, and it would be both appropriate and fitting for his time as CEO to end the same way.
Even before Musk owned the company, there were reports that he intended to act as CEO of Twitter only temporarily, and just a month ago he said under oath that he intended to find someone else to run the company. In follow-up tweets, Musk claimed the company “has been gaining momentum since May” (not the first time he’s used the b-word in reference to Twitter, he mentioned it at a company meeting last month) and said“The question is not to find a CEO, the question is to find a CEO who can keep Twitter alive.”
Now, with his decision-making under fire from the same people who had been his supporters and his hand-picked #TwitterFiles journalist ghosting his pleas for a public response, Musk may be willing to put his overpriced toy in someone else’s hands for a while.
Unmentioned in his tweets, but looming throughout this week’s episode, is the fact that Tesla’s stock price has fallen to a 52-week low of about $150 per share, down nearly 50 percent from a year ago. . Musk recently dropped to number two on Forbes’ list of the world’s richest people.
Reuters reports that Tesla’s third-largest individual investor and self-professed Musk fanboy KoGuan Leo tweeted earlier this week that “Elon has failed Tesla and Tesla has no working CEO.” Earlier this morning, Leo tweeted againsaying, “I wish Elon finds a new Twitter CEO soon.”
Musk has acted (for the most part) in line with the results of polls posted on his own Twitter account during the time he owned the company, but Musk’s rules can be fluid. He also promised formerly that “no major content decisions or account recovery” would take place without convening a content moderation board, then retroactively claimed that this no longer applied due to activist groups having “broken the deal”.
The status of Twitter’s new policy remains unclear in the meantime — Lorenz has been undone and Musk said Paul Graham’s account will also be reinstated, while also to claim the linking policy “will only be modified to suspend accounts when that account’s primary purpose is to promote competitors, which essentially falls under the no-spam rule.”