The Twitter message was a flash of recognition of a reality that was evident in the public reaction to Musko’s offer to acquire Twitter, an effort he described as a crusade for “freedom of speech.” The U.S. political right is dizzy from perspective, and the left is somewhere between fear and panic.
Liberals sounded the alarm and spokeswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (DN.Y.) hopedexplosion of hate crimes“And Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mas.), Calling the deal”dangerous for our democracy. Republican Senator Ted Cruz, Texas, meanwhile called itthe biggest change in freedom of speech in decadesMarjorie Taylor-Greene (R-Ga.), A far-right spokeswoman, was delighted.
There may be puzzles in American politics that can best be understood by going online and spending time in the country’s diverse and often heterogeneous communities. But this is not one of them. The best way to understand why Twitter’s takeover of the world’s richest man has turned out to be so polarizing is to dive into an area where Musk himself seems to be spending most of his time these days: Twitter.
Tucker Carlson, Conservatives Rejoice Musko’s Twitter Purchase: “Let’s Go Back”
That day, Twitter’s board accepted Musko’s popular liberal bid for $ 44 billion Twitter accounts lost hundreds of thousands of followers – Shows left-wing users deactivating their accounts in protest. According to the analysis of the social media analysis company Social Blade and the technology website The Verge, conservative accounts have gained followers.
Musk was not always so aligned with the right. He said on Twitter on social network that “strongly supported Obama in the presidential electionUntil the Democratic Party was “kidnapped by extremists.” He described himself in 2014.half Democrat, half Republican. He explained that he is “registered independent” and “in 2018.politically moderate. After pressing his relationship with the Republican governor of Texas last year, Musk said, “wants to stay away from politics.
Even his business interests seemed more in line with those of the left at first. He climate change is mentioned It was the motivation of his car company, Tesla, that caused a revolution in electric vehicles and took advantage of Democrat-approved green energy subsidies. 2017 he resigned from the then President’s Short Business Advisory Board protests against Trump’s withdrawal US from Paris climate agreements.
But he is also a fierce and insanely successful capitalist who despises unions, political correctness, and government intervention – at least when he does not benefit from it. In recent years, his companies have been criticized for his work practices, including allegations of a racist and misoginistic culture. In December, he officially relocated Tesla’s headquarters from California to Texas.
When news of Musko’s Twitter stake first spread in early April, the partisan reaction seemed to depend, at least in part, on the idea that Musk could bring back Trump, which Twitter had permanently banned after the U.S. Capitol attack. Although some report shows that this is possibleMusk did not mention Trump in public.
On the contrary, what Musk said about Twitter in recent weeks – and how and to whom he said it – is alarming.
What is the polarization schedule of Elon Musko is wrong
It started with Musko’s repeated demand that his goal in buying Twitter was to make it a “freedom of speech” platform. This may sound bilateral: the left and right generally support the First Amendment, which protects Americans from government censorship, and the concept of freedom of speech in general. But in the context of Twitter, Musko’s statements show this to many what it really means is a platform that is more tolerant of misinformation, personal harassment, bullying and hate speech.
Passionate users of online forums know from experience that this means that women, colored people, gays and transsexuals will face mountains of vitriol. Because offensive or fanatical language usually has social or professional consequences in the real world and on social networks that use content moderation, any site that announces impunity quickly becomes its magnet.
Although Musko’s approach will hit marginalized groups harder, which are distorted by liberalism, conservatives will benefit from a freer moderation of content.
A recent study by MIT and Yale of both parties ’politically engaged U.S. Twitter users found that 36 percent of Republican accounts under investigation were suspended six months after 2020. elections, compared to 8 percent of Democrat accounts. Conservatives often attribute this to Twitter’s political bias, but researchers found that this could be explained by the fact that Republicans shared significantly more misinformation on the platform.
As Musko’s Twitter proposal evolves, his tweets show an increasingly enthusiastic acceptance of right-wing expectations for a more laissez-faire regime and an increasingly open contempt for the left and existing Twitter leadership.
In recent days, Musk has repeatedly criticized or accepted criticism from individual Twitter workers, including the publication of a memo. ridiculed political leader Vijaya Gadde for denying “Twitter left-wing bias.” This caused waves of vitriol among more than 80 million Musko followers, some of whom were racist and sexist. (Gadde is a South Asian woman.)
Elonas Muskas intensifies criticism of Twitter executives, causing online attacks
On the social network Twitter, this has confirmed the fears of some employees that Musk, as the owner, will publicly despise and persecute rather than meet them in private, as any employee can expect a boss to do. And many on the left were reminded of Trump’s habit of singling out less powerful individuals, indirectly turning them into targets for their militant supporters.
But those right-wingers who believe Twitter’s current policy is unfair or even part of a liberal conspiracy to suppress their voices have interpreted Musko’s criticism quite differently. For them, Musk told the truth to the government, citing the abuses of behind-the-scenes censorship on Twitter, which echoed Trump’s promises to “drain the swamp” by eradicating corruption in government. Ben Shapiro of The Daily Wire even suggested that MuskTruth and Reconciliation Commission“Inside Twitter.
For those who are overwhelmed by Twitter’s culture, it wasn’t just Musko’s tweet content that deserved attention. It was also what he decided to engage with.
Since accepting his offer, he has consistently posted affirmative responses to the tweets of some of the toughest strongest online voices, including blogger Mike Cernovich, YouTuber Steven Crowder, and activist Tom Fitton. As Twitter users know, such responses from someone who is now probably the single most influential Twitter user reinforce these accounts and their messages.
Musk did not give such grace to similar voices from the far left. In fact, he announced on Twitter on Friday: “The extreme left hates everyone, including myself! Shortly afterwards, he added: “But I’m not a fan of the far right either. Let’s have less hate and more love.
If it’s true that Musk isn’t a fan of the far right, enjoying her approval is a strange way to show it. And those who have been following his tweets for the past few weeks don’t buy it.
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