When Elon Musk polled Twitter users about whether or not to restore former President Donald Trump’s account, he was quick to follow the majority’s desire to do so. “Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” he tweeted, Latin for “the voice of the people is the voice of God.”
Likewise, when Twitter users voted on another of his polls to “grant blanket amnesty to suspended accounts,” he went ahead and did it. He also listened to user votes in a poll to reinstate the accounts of tech journalists he suspended on Friday.
But since a clear majority of Twitter users voted for Musk to step down as Twitter CEO in another poll on Sunday, Musk has remained conspicuously (and unusually) silent. Now he seems to think the problem is not him, but who gets to vote in the polls.
In a tweet on Monday, about 12 hours after his CEO poll ended, Musk suggested that he change the way polls work on Twitter so that only those who pay for Twitter’s updated subscription service can vote. After a Twitter user said “Blue subscribers should be the only ones able to vote in policy-related polls,” Musk responded“Good point. Twitter will change that.”
While it’s unclear how he would limit voting to only those who pay for the company’s subscription service, such a change would drastically reduce the number of Twitter users who could vote in polls. It would also skew those who can vote against those users willing to pay for Twitter Blue, including the controversial paid verification feature Musk wanted to introduce. Musk’s tweet on Monday immediately sparked comparisons to poll taxes.
The incident is yet another example of the inconsistencies and chaos in Musk’s management of Twitter since taking over the company in October. After coming under fire this weekend for a controversial new policy that prohibits users from posting links to rival platforms, Musk pledged to effectively crowdsource “major policy changes” on Twitter by polling users about them and soon launched the poll on whether he should stay as CEO.
Now it appears Musk is ignoring the CEO poll results and trying to revise how polls work without first polling users about what is arguably yet another “major policy change.”
Musk’s poll, and his limited response to it so far, could add to growing uncertainty about his commitment to remain Twitter’s CEO. Musk has drawn criticism from Twitter users and advertisers for his decision to eliminate much of the company’s workforce, reinstate the accounts of a number of incendiary users, and whip the whip of seemingly hastily new policies and features to later release them. withdraw again. Tesla’s CEO is also under pressure from the automaker’s shareholders to seek a replacement from Twitter after Tesla’s stock fell significantly this year.
Musk has not immediately responded to users’ voices that he should stop running Twitter. Musk said last month that he expects to “reduce my time at Twitter and find someone else to run Twitter, over time.” But in a tweet on Sunday, he said: “Nobody wants the job that can actually keep Twitter alive. There is no successor.”
CNBC reported Tuesday that Musk is “actively seeking” a new Twitter CEO, citing anonymous sources. Twitter, which recently cut most of its public relations team, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Musk responded to the story on Twitter with two crying laughing emojis.
The most obvious potential candidates for a new Twitter CEO are Musk’s lieutenants who have helped run the company since his acquisition. The shortlist is likely to include investor Jason Calacanis, Craft Ventures partner David Sacks, and Sriram Krishnan, an Andreessen Horowitz general partner focused on crypto and the former leader of Twitter’s consumer teams.
A slew of other wildcard candidates have publicly offered to take the job, including former T-Mobile CEO John Legere and rapper Snoop Dogg.