...By Joseph Benjamin for TDPel Media.
Glitches marred the launch of Ron DeSantis’s presidential campaign on Twitter, casting doubts on Elon Musk’s ambitions to transform the platform into a competitor to Fox News.
The audio-only livestream attracted only a few hundred thousand viewers, which is significantly lower compared to popular video games like Fortnite.
The livestream suffered from crashes and delays for almost half an hour, leading to an onslaught of memes and comments mocking the right-wing governor’s “failure to launch” and questioning the impact of Musk’s cost-cutting measures at Twitter.
Technical Issues and Criticisms:
The glitches and technical meltdowns prompted widespread mockery of the event.
Many users criticized the hosts of the livestream for failing to challenge DeSantis on his statements, which largely echoed his conservative “anti-woke” cultural talking points.
Alongside the technical issues, users expressed disappointment at the lack of substantive questioning during the event.
Concerns Over Twitter’s Direction:
In addition to technical failures, critics raised concerns about Twitter’s ideological direction.
Some users mocked Musk and Twitter’s bird logo, suggesting that the glitches were symbolic of his impact on the platform.
DeSantis’s decision to choose Twitter for his announcement came after news broke that Tucker Carlson, a former Fox News star, would move his show to the platform.
The Daily Wire, a conservative news outlet, also announced its plans to host video and podcasts on Twitter.
Musk has positioned these events as part of his vision to transform Twitter into a digital town square and capitalize on his investment in the social media giant.
Musk’s primary challenge is to attract prominent users who can generate engaging content on Twitter, thus encouraging users to spend more time on the platform.
However, Musk’s focus on the right-wing demographic may deter advertisers who prefer a more diverse audience.
The potential loss of advertisers could jeopardize Musk’s goal of recouping his $44 billion investment in Twitter.
While initially intending to compensate for lost revenue through a subscription service, Musk’s efforts have struggled to gain traction.
His unorthodox approach, including bringing back banned accounts and clashing with mainstream media, has also faced criticism.
Musk finds himself torn between two conflicting objectives.
On one hand, he seeks to regain advertisers’ trust and secure profitability for Twitter.
On the other hand, he wishes to maintain his unconventional behavior and free expression.
Major advertisers withdrew from the platform following Musk’s takeover due to concerns about his erratic conduct and the dismissal of numerous employees.
Musk initially planned to rely on a subscription model to offset the revenue loss, but his recent hiring of Linda Yaccarino as CEO suggests a shift in strategy.
The Hiring of Linda Yaccarino:
Linda Yaccarino, an experienced advertising executive, was appointed as CEO to enhance Twitter’s appeal to blue-chip advertisers.
Some critics argue that Musk’s inclusion of controversial figures on the right-wing spectrum contradicts his pursuit of profitable advertising partnerships.
Others, however, point out that media outlets catering to conservatives have achieved financial success.
Musk’s commitment to his unfiltered online behavior, including engagement with conspiracy theories and far-right tropes, raises questions about his ability to attract trustworthy advertisers.
Balancing Profit and Ideology:
While critics worry that Musk’s association with divisive figures on the right may undermine his advertising prospects, others argue that profitability has always been the priority in media.
They draw parallels to successful conservative media platforms like talk radio and Fox News.
Notably, Fox News currently faces challenges in its dominance of US TV news.
If Musk’s endeavors on Twitter fail, he may need to invest additional funds to support the platform.
Creating a credible news outlet on
Twitter would require a significant investment in infrastructure.
The glitches during Ron DeSantis’s Twitter campaign launch have cast doubts on Elon Musk’s plan to challenge Fox News.
The technical issues, along with criticisms of Twitter’s ideological direction and the lack of advertiser appeal, have raised concerns about Musk’s ability to make the platform financially successful.
While Musk’s unfiltered behavior may attract a subscriber base of far-right extremists, it remains uncertain if it can generate sustainable profits.
Ultimately, Musk may need to make further investments to make Twitter a viable competitor in the news media landscape.