He All the time Tweeted Like He Owned the Place

Mr. Musk’s Twitter, very like his cash, works in ways in which others’ don’t. He follows solely 114 accounts, however his tweets normally obtain tens of hundreds of replies apiece, and infrequently many extra. He opens his Twitter app to what’s fairly doubtless the busiest notifications tab on the whole service, representing hundreds of thousands of phrases directed at him, largely about him.

With every pull of a thumb, the tab algorithmically replenishes from a pool of extra new posts than a single human may presumably hope to learn. It’s a Twitter that’s too busy and overloaded to resemble Twitter as most individuals understand it, with each attainable notification bubble eternally studying “99+.”

Twitter, for almost all of customers, is a spot to comply with folks and possibly publish. For a smaller group of customers, it’s a spot to attempt to amass a following. For somebody in Mr. Musk’s place, “it’s like he’s texting the world,” mentioned Jake Updegraff, a celeb social media supervisor with expertise working giant Twitter accounts.

With a big sufficient viewers, Mr. Updegraff mentioned, “it’s like an entire discussion board beneath every little thing you publish.” It’s an on-demand portal to the middle of a media galaxy, by which a daily feed of data is changed with an infinite stream of individuals addressing you by title. For the best kind of particular person, few issues could possibly be extra intoxicating (or extra debilitating).

The methods by which Mr. Musk has leveraged Twitter for real-world energy are measured with totally different instruments, and on a unique scale, than no matter clout he has been capable of accumulate inside the platform. They’re what is going to matter most sooner or later, to him and to the remainder of us. Mr. Musk plainly sees worth in what Twitter already does and in what it has allowed him to do, and his need to defend or lengthen these qualities may have critical penalties effectively past the platform.

For decoding Mr. Musk’s claims about how Twitter could change, his expertise with the platform could possibly be instructive. He has used Twitter to advertise his firms — Tesla specifically, but additionally SpaceX, the Boring firm and others — and relentlessly assault his critics and opponents.

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