Life,  Tech

“crazy” tweet

  Elon Musk’s “reckless” management style has upended Twitter. I can’t help but wonder, is it necessary to take such bold actions to solve Twitter’s problem?
  Since Elon Musk, the world’s richest man, bought Twitter for $44 billion, the company has undergone a series of sudden turnarounds. Some of the changes were deliberate, such as Musk firing 50% of the company’s 7,000 employees. But other shifts, such as strikes by more than 1,000 critical infrastructure workers and advertisers, have not.
  Musk’s stated desire to make Twitter a safe haven for any speech “within the law” has led to a sharp rise in posts promoting white nationalism, anti-Semitism, homophobia and threats of right-wing political violence, prompting many users to reconsider whether to continue using Twitter. the platform.
  Critics say all of these aggressive moves are akin to burning Twitter investors’ money. So, is there a reason for Musk’s madness? Andy Wu is an assistant professor of business administration at Harvard Business School, where he researches technology entrepreneurs and their strategies for gaining a competitive advantage. He expressed his thoughts on Musk’s recent moves in an interview with the Harvard Gazette.
  Reckless, or “Move fast and break things”
  Many of Elon Musk’s Twitter moves have been widely criticized as erratic or even reckless. Some in the tech world see it as more of a “move fast and break things” strategy than it appears on the surface.
  In fact, people shouldn’t be surprised by Musk’s management style on Twitter. What he does at Twitter is indistinguishable from the way he runs SpaceX, Tesla and other businesses. While Twitter doesn’t build electric cars or go to Mars, Musk’s situation at Twitter is just as challenging. Twitter may need a leader who is willing to take some risks, rather than being as conservative as it has been in the past.
  Before the acquisition, Twitter as a company was actually much weaker than most people realized. They’ve struggled with profitability for years and have been rather slow to innovate in terms of new features and growth opportunities. With this deal, all Elon Musk has done to get the press to pay attention to Twitter is to expose to the public a lot of Twitter weaknesses that no one had noticed or thought about before.
  There has indeed been a lot of rough edges to what Musk has been doing on Twitter so far. But many of the mistakes, sometimes laughable, seen over the past few weeks are the unavoidable consequence of having to make certain decisions very quickly. A big challenge for Twitter, for example, is that its ongoing cost structure is somewhat out of control, higher than that of comparable social media companies by any measure.
  If you compare Meta/Facebook to Twitter, Facebook’s revenue per employee is twice that of Twitter’s, and Facebook has significantly more employees working on long-term innovative projects than Twitter. For the most part, Twitter has been inefficient at maintaining existing operations and innovating new features. So, Musk came in and fired half of the staff.
  While I sympathize with all the employees at Twitter who have gone through this, at the same time, it should not be surprising that Musk chose to start his Twitter career in this way.
  Twitter’s changes and experiments are gradually unfolding.
  Before Musk’s acquisition, Twitter was an influential but unprofitable business, which had lost money in 8 of the past 10 years. Now that digital ad revenue is rapidly declining across the internet, advertisers are pausing or ditching Twitter.
  Twitter’s financial outlook is shaky. While Musk and his co-investors wanted to bail the company out again, there was money available. Still, the decline in ad revenue may be worse than anyone expected. In the long run, Musk certainly wants to build a revenue stream outside of advertising, but it’s not yet known whether premium memberships, financial payments, or any other ideas will make up for lost advertising revenue. These still need to be tried.
  A big motivation for the deal was that Musk and his co-investors like Peter Thiel and others really wanted to build and protect Twitter’s vision of being a public forum for free speech . There are plenty of advertisers out there who don’t want to be associated with the definition of free speech, but if that’s the vision Musk and his co-investors want to achieve, they’ll inevitably need to figure out other ways to make their business happen besides ad revenue Monetize because lost ad revenue is a cost they will always face.
  So far, no structural changes have been seen in Twitter’s business, but Twitter’s changes and experiments are gradually unfolding.
  What does Musk need to do in the future to stabilize the situation, or at least convince everyone that things are under control? He must continue to actively engage with all stakeholders. In the short term, calming advertisers will be important, and Musk has already moved in that direction.
  In the long run, Musk will either need to agree to some of the demands of advertisers, or more aggressively try and grow the alternative revenue streams he craves. He proposed a financial payment system like senior membership and WeChat. But it is yet to be seen whether these will have a significant impact economically.
  What risks does Musk face
  ? The immediate priority is to ensure that Twitter’s broader technical infrastructure and social graph remain active. On the surface, Twitter seems to have a lot to play with, like the blue checkmark, but those aren’t really the biggest technical burdens. Most importantly, Twitter needs to ensure the website and essential applications continue to function. For example, being able to handle the expansion of World Cup traffic and keep running when the most people are watching.
  In this regard, the situation is very dangerous, because Twitter has lost a lot of people, both in layoffs and a considerable number of people who voluntarily decided to leave. Musk is at risk of losing or has lost the “key people behind the scenes” who have kept Twitter’s technical foundation stable in the past.
  Twitter has been involved in data privacy and security breaches for more than a decade. Last May, the company had to pay a $150 million civil penalty to the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission for misleading consumers about its use of personal information. The FTC has put a lot of pressure on Twitter.
  Twitter needs to handle the legal and regulatory situation very carefully. Musk’s current big move is sure to cause dissatisfaction. Some people in Washington, D.C. might also be upset about this and want to draw attention to Twitter.
  Also, the broader risks of regulatory and legal issues don’t just concern the United States. For what Musk wants to do on Twitter, there will be various risks and problems in other parts of the world. Data privacy is one of the important issues.
  Another important issue is content moderation. Different countries and governments have different ideas about what constitutes appropriate content moderation. Other countries may expect stricter content moderation than the US. Even in Canada, which requires tighter controls than in the U.S., Twitter appears to be moving toward challenging some of those norms, potentially exposing the company to more risk.

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