This Friday, October 27, will be remembered not just for the falling autumn leaves or the looming specter of Halloween. Instead, it will mark the first anniversary of Elon Musk's audacious takeover of the popular social media platform Twitter, now known by its rebirthed moniker: Company X.
"The bird is free."
With these words, Elon Musk heralded a new era for the microblogging site on October 27, 2022. His takeover came with grand promises, yet, a year into his reign, the platform is grappling with several challenges—both old and new.
Major Overhauls and Unforeseen Challenges
After Musk took the reins, radical changes soon followed. Over half of Company X's workforce received pink slips, a decision that was as surprising as the platform's name change. However, what seemed like a fresh start for the company soon descended into a quagmire of controversies.
Musk, known for his unyielding belief in absolute freedom of speech, found himself in the crosshairs of public opinion and regulatory bodies alike. The platform faced criticism for its content moderation policies, especially the reinstatement of accounts previously banned for policy violations.
As if navigating the troubled waters of content moderation wasn't enough, technical difficulties added to the platform's woes. Frequent outages and lagging performance marred the user experience, further eroding trust. Company X's reputation took another hit with revelations about its dwindling user base.
Linda Yaccarino, the platform's CEO, unveiled startling statistics: a loss of between 9 and 34 million daily active users. This translates to a staggering drop of 3.7 to 11.6% in just one year.
The Financial Front: A Steep Decline
Money talks, and for Company X, it has been a tale of decline.
Jérôme Colin, a data consultant at Fifty-Five, notes that prior to Musk's takeover, advertising was the lifeblood of Twitter, accounting for a whopping 90% of its 2021 revenue—approximately $4.5 billion.
Now, the Wall Street Journal reports that advertising revenue is down by a jaw-dropping 40%. As Company X moves into its second year under Musk, its trajectory remains uncertain. With calls for a 24-hour boycott to protest against the network's alleged abuses, it's clear that the path to regaining user trust and financial stability will be steep.
Yet, in the dynamic world of social media, fortunes can change overnight. Only time will tell if Musk's Company X will soar again.