Thinking man’s Prosciutto Cotto, Musk honestly believed that if he asked users to vote for him to stay on as Twitter’s CEO after making a pig’s ear of the job they would all tell him how wonderful he was.
Musk has a history of using Twitter polls to rubber-stamp major decisions, selling a tenth of his Tesla holdings after one poll in 2021, restoring Donald Trump’s account after a second last month and reinstating several suspended accounts after a third. “Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” Musk tweeted after the Trump poll.
But in this case more than 10 million people voted and more than 57.5 per cent said he should go forth and multiply. The number is incredibly high because only those who were Twitter users could vote and many people with brains left after Musk started giving passes to anti-Semitic neo-nazis under the guise of “free speech.”Last week Musk started banning members of the press for reporting stories about him that he didn’t like making the whole “free speech thing” look one-sided.
Musk apparently has realised he made an error when he saw the election result and said that only paid Twitter Blue subscribers will be able to vote in future policy-related polls -- thus making free speech something you have to pay for.
Like many of his right-wing friends when faced with the reality that a huge chunk of the population hates them enough to vote them out, Musk claimed that the election was fixed – even when he ran it himself and he was the only candidate. He claimed that fake accounts skewed the results of the poll.
Musk, like most autocrats out of their depth, has been making inconsistent policy on the fly. For example, on Sunday he banned all links to other social networks, including Mastodon, Instagram, Facebook, and even minor platforms such as Nostr, used by the Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, and Linktree, a homepage creation tool favoured by influencers.
That ban was rescinded by the end of the day, after a Twitter poll from the Twitter Safety account, with Musk saying: “Going forward, there will be a vote for major policy changes. My apologies. Won’t happen again.”
We would not bet on it, but we also do not think he is going to rush to find a new CEO any time soon either.