Good morning dear readers of Tecnogalaxy, today we will talk about the possible plans of Elon Musk about Twitter.

Twitter accepted a bid from Tesla and SpaceX billionaire Elon Musk, leading to a day of frantic speculation about a question: how will Twitter change?

Musk’s stated plans are a set of features and principles that may or may not be seriously intended to pursue, but demonstrate a number of potentially conflicting goals and changes whose mechanisms have been outlined very little, if at all.

Musk indicated his priorities in a press release, echoing earlier statements he made about potential changes. “Freedom of speech is the foundation of a functioning democracy and Twitter is the digital city square where issues vital to the future of humanity are debated,” he said. “I also want to make Twitter better than ever by improving the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating spam bots and authenticating all humans“.

In other words, it has four main ideas to unlock Twitter’s potential:

Freedom of speech

Online speech is a minefield, and if Musk really means a minimally moderate Twitter around the world, he could expect massive fighting in countries that limit things like hate speech and false information. But Musk’s view on freedom of speech doesn’t seem very interested in this. In an interview with TED, he indicated that Twitter should “match the laws of the country,” which suggests that it could continue practices such as regionally blocking certain content and following rules such as India’s social media regulations.

Musk has much more room for manoeuvre on changing Twitter’s policies on what types of content are banned, of course, and when users are suspended. He indicated that he would rather sin on the side of “time-outs” and leave borderline content online. Many have speculated that this would put former President Donald Trump back on the platform, which is not an unreasonable prediction, but Musk did not say anything publicly. (Trump also said he would not return).

There are some excellent overviews of how Musk might decide to change Twitter policies and the risks he should face, including from Charlie Warzel of The Atlantic and Mike Masnick of TechDirt. But, at this point, we don’t know much about how Musk would concretely change Twitter’s discourse policies. It would probably urge moderators to issue fewer bans and potentially leave questionable content. But virtually every site that claims a banner of “free speech” ends up banning something that makes it deeply unpleasant for users, advertisers or site owners themselves, so it’s premature to say how far its commitment will go.


One of Musk’s areas of concern are recommendation algorithms that amplify or downgrade tweets and accounts in potentially distorted ways. He proposed to publish Twitter’s algorithmic sorting systems on Github so that people can publicly review and comment on them, making something like the “top tweets” classification system theoretically more readable.

Musk described that he made the algorithm “open source“, but did not outline specific plans to follow the requirements of an open source license, so he might mean it in a more informal sense. It could also describe something that works within the core Twitter product or through the separate but Twitter-funded open source Bluesky project, which would have different implications for the main Twitter app.

Transparency is generally welcome, and former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey also suggested allowing users to choose between different recommendation systems. That said, many web platforms (including Google and Reddit) don’t exactly reveal how their systems work because that would give spammers and other bad actors a guide to playing with the system. The Twitter algorithm will also not explain how priority was given to a given tweet unless Twitter releases a huge amount of additional data, nor would it necessarily illustrate the logic behind any human moderation that intersects with it. And it would be incredibly vulnerable for people who want to make bad-faith claims by taking pieces out of context, misinterpreting them voluntarily or sowing conspiracy theories about them.


Musk indicated that “spam and scam bots” and “armies of bots” are Twitter’s new public enemy No. 1. This makes sense, since Musk is a perennial subject of cryptocurrency scam imitators. How he would control this, however, is an open question. Unlike vocal maximalism, here there is not a big philosophical difference: nobody likes spambot! Twitter already deletes fake accounts and has banned some features, such as simultaneous tweets from multiple accounts, which facilitate bot spam. So how would Musk do better?

Well, Musk may have some sort of unannounced anti-spam tool in the works, although there is no indication that he spent more time thinking about it than Twitter engineers did. (Again: Twitter already has many incentives for police spam!) Or Musk might simply decide to go a lot further wrong in blocking the account’s malicious automated activity, blocking access to the Twitter API, or demoting content from humans who behave too much like bots.

Unfortunately, that goal would probably work in conflict with its drive for freedom of expression and transparency. As mentioned earlier, the publication of the internal functioning of Twitter’s amplification system would also give spammers more tools to work with.


The strangest and probably most disruptive part of Musk’s Twitter speech is his last three words: “authenticate all humans“. Musk made a similar comment on Twitter prior to the purchase, calling it “authentic all true humans“, following a commitment to defeat robots. However, it was not specific about the purpose of this authentication or how it would be performed.

Authentication” could potentially mean a few different things here. It could refer to people who have to pass some sort of “I’m a human” captcha-style test to post, although, as with spambot bans, if there was an easy way to do that without affecting bona fide users, Twitter would probably do that I’ve already done that. It could also mean asking people to present an identification that proves they are specific humans , to receive a verification tick (something Musk has previously suggested ) or to operate on the service.

Musk likes to throw strange ideas as provocation, so his statements may not reflect where the platform goes. If Twitter’s past moderation challenges are indicative, however, each change will open up a whole new set of questions to answer. The open question is how much interest Musk has in managing spillovers.

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