afaqs! news bureau

Elon Musk reveals plans for user payments on X, formerly Twitter

The potential move towards introducing a nominal monthly fee is an effort to curb the influx of automated bots on the social media platform.

In a recent conversation livestreamed on Monday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Elon Musk divulged X's potential move towards introducing a nominal monthly fee for its users in an effort to curb the influx of automated bots on the social media platform.

Musk elaborated on this proposition during their discussion about artificial intelligence, emphasising that the proposed fee aims to counteract the proliferation of bot accounts. He articulated, "It appears to be the sole approach I can envision to combat the formidable hordes of bots."

The SpaceX and Tesla CEO went on to share that X currently boasts a user base of 550 million individuals, collectively generating between 100 million to 200 million posts each day. Nonetheless, he refrained from specifying whether this count included automated bots.

While Musk refrained from specifying the precise amount of the proposed user payment, he did note that it would be a "modest sum of money." He indicated a forthcoming introduction of a lower-tier pricing structure and stressed the importance of such measures in combating the significant presence of automated bots. 

Presently, X already offers a premium subscription service that charges users for certain advanced features, including the ability to edit posts and attain higher rankings in conversations and search results. The pricing for this service starts at $8 per month.

This development follows closely on the heels of Musk's recent mention of a potential lawsuit against the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The lawsuit stems from accusations of antisemitism levelled against X and Musk himself, which allegedly contributed to a decline in advertisers' patronage of the social network. The ADL had flagged an upsurge in incidents of bullying and antisemitic content on X since Musk's acquisition of the platform last year. Musk, however, was adamant in asserting his stance against "targeting any particular group," stating, "Evidently, I am firmly opposed to antisemitism and any form of hatred and discord."

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