Elon Musk

Elon Musk is asking Twitter users to cast their votes in an online poll over whether he should step down as head of the social media platform.

Musk has come under fire for a number of policy changes since his takeover of the company back in October this year. After being criticised for indicating he would ban sharing links to other social media sites on Twitter, he shared a tweet on Sunday (December 18) in which he pledged to take a vote on all major policy changes going forward.

This tweet was followed by a poll, in which he asked: “Should I step down as head of Twitter? I will abide by the results of this poll.” Not long after, he shared another tweet: “As the saying goes, be careful what you wish, as you might get it”.

With seven hours left to vote on the poll at the time of writing, more than 10million people have participated, with 56.3% voting yes, and 43.7% voting no. It’s not clear what stepping down would mean for the CEO, who would presumably still own the social networking company.

Musk has made a number of controversial moves since acquiring Twitter. Initially, the Tesla and SpaceX founder claimed he was motivated to buy Twitter because he believed in free speech.

“It is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide rang of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner,” he wrote at the time, going on to restore a number of banned accounts including Donald Trump and Kanye West (though West was suspended again this month).

However, Musk recently contradicted his free speech claims by banning a number of journalists from CNN, New York Times and Washington Post. Musk claimed they had “doxxed” his location and “endangered his family” by writing articles about the suspension of a Twitter account ElonJet, which was dedicated to tweeting the location of his private jet. However, most of the articles did not include information about his or his family’s real-time locations.

Following criticism over the ban, he shared a poll on whether he should unsuspend the accounts, after seven days or immediately, with 58.7% of users voting for the latter. “The people have spoken,” he wrote, reinstating the accounts.

Musk also blocked links to rival social media sites over the weekend, such as Mastodon. Subsequently, a new policy was introduced to bar accounts that are “created solely” to promote competing social networks.

Twitter has lost more than half of its employees since Musk’s takeover, with the CEO firing a number of high executives. The company was rumoured to be on the brink of collapse last month, when leaked emails revealed Musk telling remaining staff they had to “work long hours at high intensity” or leave the company.

The post Elon Musk creates poll asking if he should step down as head of Twitter appeared first on NME.


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