Elon Musk, the owner of X (formerly Twitter), has suggested the possibility of introducing a monthly fee for all users of the platform in an effort to combat bots. Bots, which are accounts run by computer programs, are a common issue on X and can be used to artificially amplify various messages, including political propaganda and hate speech.
Musk made this statement during a conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who raised concerns about online anti-Semitism and the use of bots to spread hate. Musk believes that requiring even a small monthly payment from users could deter the use of bots since it would increase the cost of running them.
This potential move comes after Musk made several changes to the platform since acquiring it for $44 billion in October of the previous year. These changes include firing thousands of employees, introducing a paid premium option, reducing content moderation, and reinstating previously banned accounts, including that of former US president Donald Trump.
In July, Musk disclosed that the platform had experienced a significant loss in advertising revenue. This proposal for a monthly fee could be one of Musk’s strategies to address some of the challenges and controversies surrounding the platform, including the presence of bots and the amplification of divisive content.
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