Twitter is now X

Elon Musk is one step closer to his vision of an "everything app". Twitter has now been renamed X on the grounds that the old name was no longer suitable to the app’s profile. The new concept is modelled on the Chinese super app WeChat, which has functions practically for every aspect of users’ digital lives. Commentators are sceptical nonetheless.

Der Standard (AT) /

Musk’s path to destruction continues

The tech billionaire is now completely dismantling the social media platform, according to Der Standard:

“No one embodies the Silicon Valley mantra ‘Move fast and break things’ quite like Elon Musk. However, he takes the second part of the motto far too literally. ... Once, Twitter was the most politically relevant social media platform; in 2009, the verb ‘to tweet’ made it into the German Duden dictionary, and it has been in the Oxford Dictionary since 2013. The brand Twitter had secured a place in the cultural lexicon. Musk has destroyed it in a single action that didn’t even last 24 hours. The verb ‘to X,’ used for posting contributions on the platform, won’t make it into any dictionary so fast. But Musk doesn’t care. The main thing is that he managed to break something.”

Peter Zellinger
Der Spiegel (DE) /

Next hashtag movement will come from the right

The rebranding is part and parcel of Musk’s political mission, states Sascha Lobo, columnist for Der Spiegel:

“Elon Musk wants to crown his political struggle — the fight against ‘Wokeness’ — and destroy the instrument that fuelled it in the first place. ... And if, in the process, a few right-wing individuals, right-wing extremists, and obvious misogynists gain prominence and profit, it not only doesn’t seem to bother him but also appears to fit quite well into his own political agenda. ... Societal damage is already happening: the next hashtag movement with the potential impact of BlackLivesMatter or MeToo will either never gain significant traction — or it will come from the right.”

Sascha Lobo
The Independent (GB) /

Victory belongs to those who dare

Musk is taking a big risk with the rebranding but he could be rewarded for it, says The Independent:

“Over at Meta, home of the upstart competitor, Threads, they must be laughing. In the corporate world it doesn’t get any more dangerous than altering your name entirely. ... He is taking a colossal gamble, but then that has always been Musk’s style. Famously, he never makes formal business plans, which is just as well. The textbooks and classes at business school would say don’t do it, but then again, he did not get to where he is today by sticking to the script.”

Chris Blackhurst
Irish Examiner (IE) /

This won’t halt the downward trend

The problems at Twitter point to a larger crisis in the social media, the Irish Examiner comments:

“[Elon Musk’s] latest move smacks somewhat of desperation as the company seemingly moves towards cold, hard functionality rather than the softer associations it enjoyed. But the move reflects a greater global trend away from social media and the sudden stagnation of the so many platforms is symptomatic of the growing stasis in the sector. That people are increasingly tuned into ‘real’ issues such as climate change has also contributed to its lack of muscle. A rebranding exercise may not stop a seemingly inexorable slide.”