Rumors have swirled that Elon Musk has plans to make all Twitter/X users pay for access to the system. Is it true or is has the controversial CEO been somewhat misquoted?
Many believe that Musk has done nothing good for X since taking over, not the least of which includes ditching the decades-old brand name for a single letter, a true nightmare for anyone remotely familiar with SEO.
However, Musk does not appear to have plans to charge all Twitter users a fee to scroll the popular social media app, but rather plans on adding a more affordable tier for its Verified plan.
Lower Tier Pricing Coming to Twitter/X?
In a one-on-one discussion with Benjamin Netanyahu streamed live on X, Elon Musk mentioned that the company was “moving to having a small monthly payment for use of the system,” which many believed was a reference to an all-user fee was coming.
However, if you watch the video, you'll notice the emphasis on “small” appears to refer to a more affordable version of the Verified plan, which is already in place for $8 per month.
This would make Twitter/X very similar to other business software on the market, which offers tiered pricing that unlocks a wide range of different features, while for the time being, preserving the free plan.
Why Would Twitter/X Charge a Subscription Fee?
So, why does Elon Musk want to provide a more affordable pricing tier for Verified accounts on X?
Well, the most obvious reason is that the company isn't making any money. Reports have noted that the company is still down big when it comes to ad revenue. On top of that, Musk keeps picking legal fights and getting fined, which surely can't be helping the financial woes of the social media company.
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However, Musk insists that his go-to scapegoat, “bots,” remains the drive force behind this controversial decision.
“The single-most important reason we're moving to having a small monthly payment for use of the X system is it's the only way I can think of to combat vast armies of bots.” – Elon Musk, CEO of Twitter/X
As for the confusion surrounding whether Musk wanted to charge all users a fee, take it as a lesson on why firing your entire PR department is a bad idea.
Will More Affordable Options Save Twitter/X?
There's no denying that Twitter/X is having trouble right now. Beyond its fast-dropping ad revenue, the platform is consistently losing users and regularly experiencing technical difficulties, likely due to the waning number of employees from layoffs.
Plus, with Musk getting rid of most content moderators for the platform, reports have shown that instances of antisemitism, sexism, racism, and general hate speech have increased, which is steadily driving more and more users away.
Even worse, the X rebrand hasn't gone as planned for Musk, with the majority (69%) of users still calling it Twitter months after the change.
All that to say, a more affordable version of a service widely lambasted by the majority of Twitter users is likely not the answer to the social media platform's woes.