ELON Musk’s U-turn to proceed with the purchase of Twitter is part of his plans to transform the platform into an “everything app,” the billionaire entrepreneur said.
When news broke of his decision to go ahead with the acquisition deal after months of public bickering with the platform — and just weeks before a court hearing over the issue — Musk tweeted that the site’s purchase was “an accelerator for the development of X that will do everything.” app, was “.
The Tesla boss has been vocal about his support for the idea of an “everything app” in the past.
That’s a theoretical central location where users can access most, if not all, of their favorite online services and utilities.
It follows its previous commitments to allow total freedom of speech on the platform and remove any spam or bot accounts to improve conversation and make Twitter the world’s “digital marketplace”.
In China, a version of the idea already exists in WeChat, which was launched as a messaging platform similar to WhatsApp.
The platform has since grown into a mini web within a single app, allowing users to do everything from sharing social media-style posts with friends, to checking messages, making mobile payments, booking restaurants and hailing taxis.
There is nothing comparable in the West.
Social media expert and industry commentator Matt Navarra said he was unconvinced by the proposal.
“I’ll believe it when I see it,” he told the PA news agency.
“Super apps, as they are called in the industry, are nothing new. They’ve been very successful in Asia but haven’t really caught on elsewhere.
“Could Twitter be part of a super app that lets you buy goods, chat with friends, get messages, book a cab, etc.? Secure. Can Elon Musk make it work? Possibly. Will Elon actually do it? Who knows. He seems to have bonding issues.”
Another important focus would be the platform’s approach to free speech, especially as important online safety regulations in the UK and countries around the world draw closer.
The Tesla and SpaceX boss has previously said he firmly believes in absolute freedom of expression, in that anything that isn’t illegal should be allowed to stay online.
He has confirmed he would allow suspended accounts like that of former US President Donald Trump to come back to fulfill Twitter’s mission of being an unfiltered digital marketplace.
This stance would likely run into significant problems once the UK’s Online Safety Act comes into force.
While the bill has pledged to protect freedom of expression through safeguards for content of democratic importance and news publishers, it will require platforms to not only remove illegal content, but also any topics deemed “legal but harmful.” , which is likely to be content related to abuse or harassment, among other things.
With hefty fines and even the prospect of being banned from the UK, Musk will likely have to soften his stance on absolute freedom of expression if he wants Twitter to remain on the right-hand side of regulators.
Former Twitter vice-president Bruce Daisley told BBC Radio 4’s Today program it was an “incredibly simplistic approach” and unlikely to make Twitter more profitable.
“I’m not convinced it would be (more profitable). If you opened a newspaper and it was page after page of toxic articles and toxic images, I think that would, to some extent, put you off,” he said.
Many current Twitter employees are also said to be alarmed by Musk’s proposed approach, an issue industry analyst Mike Proulx says the billionaire needs to address if he is to succeed as head of the company.
“Twitter remains an important part of our culture, notwithstanding the ongoing drama surrounding this on-and-off deal,” he said.
“But if Musk takes over the company, his number one mission must be to earn and keep the trust of Twitter employees. This is not an easy task as he will assume a large confidence deficit.
“The future of Twitter is bleak without a dedicated employee base and there is a lot of repair work to be done there.”
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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/9517649/elon-musk-vows-twitter-x-the-everything-app/ Elon Musk promises to make Twitter part of new ‘X, the everything app’ – The Irish Sun