Journalist Kara Swisher thinks there is one person to blame for the advertising crisis at X (formerly Twitter), and that’s the company’s owner himself, Elon Musk. After CNN’s Chris Wallace asked Swisher to take her “best shot” at the X and SpaceX CEO live on his show, Swisher obliged.
“Well, I’m trying to think of something so that ‘Space Karen’ doesn’t sue me,” Swisher said. “So, let me say he’s ‘troubled.’”
She added, “I think we all saw that on display. It’s something I’ve been saying for a long time. He’s deluded.”
Swisher followed invoking the “Space Karen” meme by saying that Musk needs to hold himself accountable for the advertising exodus at X (formerly Twitter).
“He doesn’t understand that advertisers don’t get an ROI, which is a return on investment by advertising,” Swisher continued. “There is trying to turn it into something else. But, you know, these advertisers are fleeing because of him and he refuses to take blame.”
“So we’ll see,” she said. “And he is enabled by his CEO, Linda Yaccarino, who keeps supporting this behavior.”
One of Musk’s many troubles began on Nov. 15, when he agreed with an antisemitic tweet from his personal account on the platform. Reactions were strong and swift. Chris Hayes likened Musk to the notorious antisemite Henry Ford as advertisers began pulling or pausing their support of X in droves.
X CEO Linda Yaccarino responded to the controversy on Nov. 16, tweeting that “X’s point of view has always been very clear that discrimination by everyone should stop across the board — I think that’s something we can and should all agree on.”
“When it comes to this platform — X has also been extremely clear about our efforts to combat antisemitism and discrimination. There’s no place for it anywhere in the world — it’s ugly and wrong,” she wrote. “Full stop.”
In an apparent act of defiance, Musk told departing advertisers to “go f–k yourself.” He also apologized for the tweet in question and said he “handed a loaded gun to those who hate me, and arguably to those who are antisemitic. For that I’m quite sorry. That was not my intention.”
“I should in retrospect not have replied to that particular post,” Musk added.
Musk’s problems grew in size after a Media Matters report accused X of placing ads for brands including Disney, Warner Bros. and Apple, as well as others, alongside content that promotes “Adolf Hitler and his Nazi party.”
Advertisers who have pulled or suspended their campaigns with the platform include Disney, Warner Bros., Paramount and Sony, among numerous others.
Watch the interview with Kara Swisher in the video above.