Speaking at the 2023 DealBook Summit in New York, Elon Musk, owner of social media platform X, formerly Twitter, took a defiant stand against advertisers abandoning the platform due to controversial posts.
WATCH: Musk tells advertisers “blackmailing” him to f*** themselves
Musk bluntly dismissed attempts at what he called “blackmailing him with money”, especially singling out Disney CEO Bob Iger.
He warned of public backlash if advertisers continued to exit.
Should X fail because of their exit, he says that Earth “will document it in great detail”.
In recent weeks, Musk’s promotion of content termed as “antisemitic and racist hate” on X triggered major advertisers like Disney and Apple to halt campaigns.
Musk acknowledged the folly of his posts and apologised on air, denying antisemitism.
Despite this, notable figures, including Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, left the platform.
Musk, also CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, denied being antisemitic, asserting that X prohibits calls for extreme violence.
His recent visit to Israel, where he offered help to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Gaza’s reconstruction, was not part of an apology tour.
As of writing, X has been overwhelmed with chatter talking about Musk’s interview, with a overwhelming majority in favour of his candid response, calling it an act of heroism.
Go Elon! is beginning to trend as of time of writing.
Though there are undeniably detractors, mostly of the “antifa” variety.
At the DealBook Summit, Musk addressed the UAW’s campaigns against Tesla and other automakers, expressing negative views on unions.
He defended against potential leverage, stating that users decide success, and regulators oversee his global companies.
Responding to questions about China and OpenAI, Musk emphasized adhering to local laws and voiced concerns about AI’s potential harm to humanity.
Musk also shared mixed feelings about OpenAI CEO Sam Altman’s power, expressing worries about AI’s impact on humanity, revealing personal distress over the issue.
We cannot tell if the support for Musk stems from the alleged “antisemitism” or from his candour, which portrayed him as authentic.
In a book written by Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead, she wrote:
“To sell your soul is the easiest thing in the world. That’s what everybody does every hour of his life. If I asked you to keep your soul—would you understand why that’s much harder?”
Perhaps in today’s cultural war where everyone struggles to fit in, adopting personas that they may not necessarily agree with, a person such as Musk who defiantly stands their ground in light of pressure is something that they can respect – or relate to.
Will Musk’s gambit work? Only time will tell – but one thing is certain.
His fans haven’t been this stoked for his success in a while.