Hours after Twitter voters said he should step down from leading the company, Elon Musk late Monday indicated he would restrict who could vote in policy-related Twitter polls.
Responding Monday to a tweet that said “Blue subscribers should be the only ones that can vote in policy related polls. We actually have skin in the game,” Musk replied: “Good point. Twitter will make that change.”
Users must pay $8 a month to become Twitter Blue members, with higher prices for users who sign up through Apple. It’s unclear how many Twitter Blue subscribers there are, but recent reports have estimated a little more than 100,000 at the time Musk took over, a miniscule fraction of Twitter’s 238 million daily active users.
On Sunday, Musk posted a Twitter poll asking “Should I step down as head of Twitter? I will abide by the results of this poll.” About 17.5 million Twitter users voted, with 57.5% saying Musk should step down, while 42.5% said he should stay.
Monday’s tweets were part of a thread started by Kim Dotcom — an internet entrepreneur who has been indicted by the U.S. on racketeering and other criminal charges and has been fighting extradition for years — who, without providing any evidence, claimed the poll was flawed because hundreds of thousands of “deep state” bots voted against the Twitter owner and CEO.
As of Monday evening, Musk had not addressed whether or not he will abide by the poll results. He had previously said he’d like to eventually find a permanent CEO for Twitter other than himself.
It’s also unclear if Musk will follow through and make policy polls available to Twitter Blue users only. While he has repeatedly changed the platform’s rules with little or no notice, he has also backtracked on those decisions and other promises a number of times.
Over the weekend, Musk was forced to apologize after a swift backlash following a new rule banning accounts that linked to third-party social networks. The rule was apparently rescinded hours later, with Musk saying: “Going forward, there will be a vote for major policy changes. My apologies. Won’t happen again.”
Twitter has been in a state of chaos since Musk’s $44 billion purchase in October, and the fallout has hurt the stock of the other major company he leads, Tesla Inc.
which closed Monday below $150, its lowest price in more than two years. Shares have plunged since Musk bought Twitter, and prominent shareholders and analysts have called for him to step down as Tesla CEO, saying he’s too distracted to run the electric-vehicle company.
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