Elon isn’t just opening Twitter’s source code to provide transparency and using AI to investigate who’s trying to manipulate public opinion on the platform, though that’s part of what he’s doing. In addition to all that, he’s also using his new power to humiliate the legacy media.
How so? Here’s how:
[email protected] now auto responds with 💩
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 19, 2023
And yes, that’s real:
— Nimrod Kamer (@nnimrodd) March 19, 2023
Kari Lake, herself a former journalist in addition to a high-profile Trump supporter, loved it. Commenting on Elon’s announcement, she said:
That’s exactly the comment they deserve. pic.twitter.com/u8lT0MYDua
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) March 19, 2023
Fox Business, reporting on Elon’s new automatic response to journalists, also confirmed that the emoji response is real, saying:
A number of users fled to the comments to confirm the new automatic reply system, with many posting screenshots of their email responses.
“i hope to see that in every article going forward ‘we reached out to twitter for comment, who gave the statement ‘[emoji]’,” one user wrote.
“Verified. Just sent a test email to [email protected] and got a message with [emoji] in the subject line. Marketing experts will write about this in years to come lol #disruptivemarketing,” another user tweeted.
A statement request from Fox News Digital was responded to with the emoji and no other text.
Forbes added a few more details in its report on Twitter’s new auto-response, noting that Twitter had just stopped replying to press requests after Musk took over and is now automatically sending the emoji instead, saying:
If you’re a reporter reaching out to Twitter’s press department, you’ll now be greeted with an automated response in the form of nothing but a poop emoji. Twitter CEO Elon Musk proudly announced the change in a tweet on the social media site Sunday morning and I confirmed it was true by seeking comment over email.
“email@example.com now auto responds with [poop emoji],” Musk tweeted.
Before Musk took over, reporters could generally count on receiving a response to their questions over email. But when Musk took over the platform in late October, following a $44 billion deal, Twitter’s press team stopped replying to emails.
Predictably, Forbes also complained about the lack of a press team, trying to make it seem like really they just want what’s best for Elon, saying:
For example, when Musk decided to announce via tweet in early February that Twitter would start sharing ad revenue with creators, people naturally had a lot of questions about details. If Twitter had a press team, they could’ve fielded basic questions about the timing of the rollout and how much money creators would’ve received. Instead, people tried to get answers directly from Musk, who was light on details. To this day, it’s still unclear how the revenue sharing program works because Twitter hasn’t issued a press release with basic information.
But, despite the hand-wringing and pearl-clutching from the self-important journalists, many found the new emoji policy hilarious, as a scan of the comments section will show. More important, however, was his recent announcement that Twitter would be opening its source code in the name of transparency. Announcing that, he said:
Twitter will open source all code used to recommend tweets on March 31st
Our “algorithm” is overly complex & not fully understood internally. People will discover many silly things , but we’ll patch issues as soon as they’re found!
We’re developing a simplified approach to serve more compelling tweets, but it’s still a work in progress. That’ll also be open source.
Providing code transparency will be incredibly embarrassing at first, but it should lead to rapid improvement in recommendation quality. Most importantly, we hope to earn your trust.
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