Elon Musk, the billionaire owner ofon the social platform this week “the real truth”, dismaying investors and prompting some companies to suspend their advertising on the platform.
Several advertisers – including Comcast, IBM, the European Commission and movie studio Lionsgate – said they were cutting spending on X (formerly known as Twitter), citing reports of an increase in speeches from hate, including a report that some ads appeared alongside Nazi. related content.
A Lionsgate spokesperson told CBS News in a statement Friday that the company “has paused advertising on X due to recent anti-Semitic tweets from Elon Musk.”
A spokesperson for Paramount Global, the parent company of CBS News, also confirmed that it had suspended advertising on X.
The White House also released a statement calling Musk’s comment “unacceptable.”
“We condemn in the strongest terms this abhorrent promotion of anti-Semitic and racist hatred, which goes against our fundamental values as Americans,” a White House spokesperson said Friday.
The flashback occurs after X has already suffered a, with some wary of their brands appearing on the platform amid reports of a rise in hate speech. Musk hired former NBC executive Linda Yaccarino to convince major brands to return to social media, a job that now appears to face additional headwinds following Musk’s comment.
Advertising on X fell 60% in September and revenue plummeted, Bloomberg News reporter says. In July, Musk said the company while also noting its heavy debt.
In September, global web traffic to the site fell 14%, according to Simiilarweb. Overall traffic onreportwhile noting that social media usage is down across the board.
Musk’s decision to endorse anti-Semitic ideas associated with white supremacists also upsets shareholders of Tesla, the electric car maker he launched. Tesla investors are “frustrated and dismayed” by this latest controversy, Wedbush analyst Dan Ives told CBS MoneyWatch.
“It was a dark day for Musk and Tesla with this post X heard around the world,” Ives said in an email. “Long-time shareholders are wondering what’s next? We don’t see any change in Musk’s leadership, but it’s a black eye that won’t be forgotten by many.”
Yaccarino on Thursday sought to mitigate the fallout from Musk’s comments, saying in an article on X that the company had “been extremely clear about our efforts to combat anti-Semitism and discrimination.” There is no place for this anywhere in the world – it is ugly and wrong. Complete stop.”
Nonetheless, Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz wrote on Threads that Yaccarino should ask Musk to resign at X. She “faces her biggest test yet as she decides whether to terminate her CTO anti-Semitic or risk losing even more advertisers,” he wrote, referring to Musk’s decision. role of CTO at X.
Musk’s ‘real truth’
Musk, the world’s richest person, sparked the backlash by expressing support for an anti-Semitic message on the platform on Thursday, describing it as “the real truth.”
The original post from user
Musk responded, “You told the real truth” while also criticizing the Anti-Defamation League, an advocacy group that fights hatred against Jewish people. “The ADL unfairly attacks the majority of the West, even though the majority of the West supports the Jewish people and Israel. This is because they cannot, by their own principles, criticize minority groups who are their main threat,” Musk tweeted.
X’s original post echoes anti-Semitic conspiracy theories that Jews want to integrate minorities to weaken and replace white majorities. Among those who espoused this were Synagogue of the Tree of Life in Pittsburgh in 2018.who went on a rampage against Jews online before killing 11 people
At the same time, growing tensions due tohas led to conflicts on American college campuses over alleged anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim incidents. Data released by the ADL found a throughout the United States since the start of the conflict.
Reports of advertisements alongside Nazi content
Major advertisers, including IBM, Apple, Oracle and Comcast’s Xfinity, have seen their ads appear alongside Nazi-themed content on X, Media Matters said in a statement. report this week. In response to this report, IBM announced that it was suspending advertising on the platform.
Musk, meanwhile, attacked Media Matters on X. “Media Matters is an evil organization,” he wrote Thursday evening.
The European Commission announced on Friday that it was suspending advertising on not specifically their presence on X.
“These are advertising campaigns. For these, we constantly evaluate and evaluate the media environment of our campaigns based on our communications objectives,” said a spokesperson.