Elon Musk says he will resign as Twitter’s chief executive after users voted in favor of such a move in an online poll. Yet, the multibillionaire first wants to find someone to replace him.
Musk’s time running the social media platform has been marked by upheaval and chaos – he fired half of Twitter’s workforce, and many others quit voluntarily, all while the new Twitter Blue was introduced, then canceled, and finally activated again.
In short, it’s been a slog. Now, Musk seems to admit work has been hard as he confirmed he would abide by the poll result and resign as Twitter CEO – but only as soon as he finds “someone foolish enough to take the job.”
On Sunday, he created a Twitter poll – according to professional pollsters, an unscientific and unrepresentative one – and asked if he should give up the reins of the company. More than 10 million people, or 57.5% of respondents, said Musk should leave the position.
Even while the vote was taking place, the billionaire, who was watching the World Cup final match in Qatar on Sunday, left quite a few comments under other users’ replies, which suggest Musk might be lacking belief in the successful future of the company.
For example, when someone commented that Musk already had the new CEO in place, he replied that “no one wants the job who can actually keep Twitter alive” and that there was no successor.
And when Lex Fridman, a scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, tweeted that he would not mind running Twitter, Musk hit back: “You must like pain a lot. One catch: you have to invest your life savings in Twitter and it has been in the fast lane to bankruptcy since May. Still want the job?”
In another answer, Musk speculated that it would be hard to find a new CEO who could keep Twitter afloat.
However, in Tuesday’s message, Musk also said he would keep running the software and servers teams. These are key areas that will allow him to control product decisions, and so far, his moves have been widely criticized.
For example, civil liberties groups have been lambasting his approach to content moderation and online safety. Many previously banned accounts were reinstated, while some journalists actually covering the circus at Twitter were suspended.
When even the United Nations Under Secretary General Melissa Fleming was prompted to remind Musk that “media freedom is not a toy,” suspensions were lifted.
Who might replace Musk, who had previously signaled he didn’t plan to stay in charge of Twitter long-term? According to him, “someone foolish enough,” however, some speculate that Twitter’s Co-Founder Jack Dorsey could come back to run the company.
Other names mentioned include Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s former Chief Operating Officer, and Jared Kushner, US former presidential adviser and son-in-law of Donald Trump.
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