A short time ago, Elon Musk conducted a long-anticipated all-hands meeting with his future employees at Twitter. A percentage of whom have been on the platform that employs them talking as if, should he succeed in wresting control of their company from the forces of good, he'll force them all to denounce their gods and turn the place into a vampiric orgy of MAGA-hatted extremism drinking the blood of the pure of heart.
If you've ever listened to Musk in a long, free form discussion with the likes of Joe Rogan or the Christian satirical site The Babylon Bee, then you know no subject is off the table. The guy is a polymath, well versed in a variety of topics and willing to discuss them all at great length. He's also, as you'd expect from a guy who gives his kids names that sound like the randomly assigned passwords you get from a cyber security app, an eccentric. Which is to say he's a kook, but with lots of brains and money. So it should come as no surprise that he leaned into his patented brand of harmless, high IQ nutjobbery.
Source - The all-hands meeting, held just after 9 am PT, saw Musk speak to 7,500 employees from a shakily held smartphone, which he looked to be holding in his hand.
Arriving ten minutes late, Musk, 51 … mused about the existence of aliens and other space civilizations during the hour-long talk, and … much like the man himself, [the meeting] served as an amalgam of both humor and substance.
In it, the South African mogul set the lofty goal of growing the site's userbase to 1 billion monthly/daily active users - more than four times its current number of [229 million] users.
Musk also mused about the existence of aliens and other space civilizations during the hour-long talk, and affirmed his stance that the social media company should strive to help 'civilization and consciousness.' …
'I think advertising is very important for Twitter,' Musk said. 'I'm not against advertising. I would probably talk to the advertisers and say, like, "hey, let's just make sure the ads are as entertaining as possible."' …
Musk responded by reiterating that he supports 'moderate politics' and that he’s 'pretty close to center.'
He added that he wants to maintain users' free speech on the platform, by allowing extreme views as long as they are within the bounds of the law.
I can't imagine what it had to be like for people who think their next boss is the Prince of Darkness and aren't familiar with him, listening to him jump from rock to rock in his own peculiar stream of consciousness, riffing on aliens (which he has stated he doesn't believe are visiting us), working remotely (which he said he's OK with), and free speech (and he's sticking by his guns to allow both). I obviously find the guy fascinating. But if I was bothered before of his opinions expressed in 280 characters or less, I'd have to be terrified on hearing him double down on his vision for my personal future in a shaky hand-held phone when he thinks so little of me that he'd leave me hanging in the Zoom room for 10 minutes. Especially when my direct deposits will be coming from him for the foreseeable future.
But I don't work for him. So I'm all about his vision of this platform. Ads? Not so much. But if they're entertaining ads, and not the lazy garbage I sat through in a theater waiting for Top Gun Maverick to begin, I'll be open minded. More to the point, he sounds committed to doing what he said from the beginning, which is to open it up to whatever kind of free expression is allowable by law. Which I assume means no direct threats, no promoting violence, no slander or libel. With the goal of a BILLION people all chiming in? If he succeeds, it would be chaos.
And a thing to behold. Truly. For better or worse, a grand experiment in human interaction. A fabulous disaster. Something only a guy who made electric cars happen and is getting us to Mars would have the audacity to pull off. And if the idea scares you, Twitter is definitely not going to be your employer of choice in a few months.