1 “The bird is free”
On October 27, 2022, controversial billionaire Elon Musk announced the takeover of Twitter for $44 billion, after a saga lasting more than six months. “The bird is free,” he tweeted in reference to the network’s logo. “Twitter is now in good hands,” greets former President Donald Trump, banned from the platform after the Capitol stormed in early 2021. On the contrary, associations fear that Musk will open the floodgates to misinformation and speeches of hate.
2 Advertisers stop paying
The reactions, enthusiastic or disappointed, multiply, but the most resounding is that of General Motors (GM). The automaker is temporarily stopping paying for ads on Twitter, 90% of whose revenue comes from advertising, becoming the first major advertiser to question its presence on the social network. “We are talking with Twitter to understand the direction of the platform under its new owner”, explains the group then. Other companies follow, such as the American giants General Mills (Cheerios and Häagen-Dazs) and Mondelez international (Oreo) or even Volkswagen and Audi.
3 The false start of the paid subscription
On November 1, Elon Musk announced the launch of an $8 per month subscription for users wishing to have their account certified and be less exposed to advertising. This announcement results in great confusion and an influx of fake accounts. Suspended, then postponed several times, the project returned to the table on December 12, with the announcement of a subscription initially available in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. United, compared to $8 per month, or $11 for Apple device owners.
4 Wave of layoffs and backpedaling
On the 4th, Twitter begins a wave of layoffs, which affects around 50% of its 7,500 employees worldwide. A dramatic change a few days later: the management calls back dozens of people when it realizes the importance of their expertise to build the new functionalities envisaged by their new media boss…
5 Ultimatum and cascading departures
On the 16th, the billionaire issues an ultimatum to his employees who survived the first wave of layoffs. They must agree before the next day to “work long hours at high intensity”, otherwise they will be dismissed. According to several American media, hundreds are choosing to leave.
6 Trump’s account restored
After a subscriber survey, Elon Musk decides to lift the suspension of Donald Trump’s Twitter account. In the process, he announced the mass reinstatement of banned accounts and the end of the fight against disinformation on the Covid. EU warns Musk, calls on him to fight misinformation.
7 Kanye West suspended
On December 2, Twitter suspended the account of American rapper Kanye West for “incitement to violence”, revealing the limits of the absolute freedom of expression advocated by Musk.
8 Suspension of journalist accounts
Twitter suspends the accounts of several journalists covering the social network and its new owner on December 15. The EU immediately threatens Musk with “sanctions”. “We have a problem with Twitter”, denounces Berlin.
9 Prohibited Competing Social Networks
On December 18, Twitter announced that it would ban its users from posting links to competing social networks. Seven platforms are concerned: Facebook, Instagram, Mastodon, Truth Social, Tribel, Post and Nostr.
10 “Should I quit running Twitter? »
Last shock tweet from Elon Musk: “Should I leave the management of Twitter? he asked network users. More than 17 million internet users took part and 57.5% of them voted “yes”. The CEO has not yet reacted, but he had assured earlier that he would respect the results of the poll, whatever they are.