Business is booming at Twitter with respect to new users after the social media platform was purchased by Elon Musk, according to the billionaire entrepreneur, even though a significant number of advertisers have backed away from the company at the behest of activist groups.
Investor slides shared by Musk say that the daily inflow of new users has reached two million, while “user active minutes per day” likewise reached eight billion. The company now has more than 250 million monetizable daily active users, Musk says. All three metrics exceed previous company records.
Musk has been attempting to avoid impersonations by selling verification subscriptions for $8 per month, a policy that has repeatedly been reversed and reintroduced. The slides said that reported impersonations spiked after he took control of the company before falling once again.
The slides also show that purported hate speech impressions have been lower since Musk acquired the platform. Musk, who claimed he purchased Twitter to promote free expression and peaceful dialogue across the political spectrum, revealed last week that the company is still defining hate speech with “the same list of terms” implemented before the acquisition.
Musk also hinted at a number of new offerings from “Twitter 2.0,” including enhanced video content, long-form tweets, encrypted direct messages, and entertaining advertisements.
Account impersonations and Musk’s endorsement of some conservative figures have provoked ire among left-wing nonprofits, some of whom recently pressured advertisers to cease their relationship with the social media company. Several organizations endorsed a letter to the executives of major advertisers claiming that “extremists” consider the takeover “a new opportunity to post the most abusive, harassing, and racist language and imagery,” including “clear threats of violence against people with whom they disagree.”
According to a report from left-wing organization Media Matters, one of the groups that signed the letter, as many as 50 of the top 100 advertisers on Twitter have “either announced or seemingly stopped” their campaigns on the platform. The companies have spent $2 billion on the platform over the past two years.
“Twitter has had a massive drop in revenue, due to activist groups pressuring advertisers, even though nothing has changed with content moderation and we did everything we could to appease the activists,” Musk confirmed earlier this month. “Extremely messed up! They’re trying to destroy free speech in America.”
The world’s richest man initially told advertisers that he acquired Twitter to “have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence.” He vowed that the social media platform would not become a “free-for-all hellscape” where users could breach the law with impunity.
Musk has remarked that widespread coverage of the acquisition and his subsequent attempts to reform the company, including negative reports from mainstream outlets, has contributed to usage reaching record levels. He said his number-one priority is the removal of child exploitation content from Twitter, which previous management neglected to accomplish. Several advertisers paused campaigns on the platform two months ago after a report showed that child sexual abuse material had appeared alongside major advertisers’ profiles.