Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you've likely heard plenty about Elon Musk's Twitter takeover. In just over six months as CEO, Musk has tossed the platform into turmoil, but the season of change has yet to finish a-changing.
Musk has now officially stated his intent to step down as CEO, and will be handing the reins to NBCUniversal Executive Linda Yaccarino in late June.
So, what will Yaccarino inherit when she steps up to the plate? Some would say a golden chalice whereas others would see a poisoned one, given the many controversial changes the platform has seen since it came under Musk's ownership.
In the ongoing saga of Twitter 2.0, there has been a lot of news to parse through. To help, we've summarized the major milestones and changes the billionaire tech mogul has made to the platform since he acquired it in October 2022.
The first six months of Twitter 2.0 – a timeline
Analysis: So, what now?
Currently, we've no clue if Yaccarino views Musk's vision of Twitter 2.0 as a boon or a burden, but as it stands one thing is for sure; she's got a lot of damage control to do if she has any hope of turning around Twitter's current reputation with both advertisers and its users.
Yaccarino has already proved a divisive choice on several many fronts. Time magazine published an insightful piece discussing the concept of the “glass cliff” – women or other minority figures being hired into senior leadership roles at a time of crisis, setting them up for failure (see: every female UK Prime Minister – not to excuse their actions). This idea becomes especially poignant when you recognize the power Musk will still have over the platform as Executive Chair and CTO, effectively retaining his ability to veto and push through changes in his own vision.
There are, of course, loyal Musk supporters (many of whom, I expect, make up the majority of Twitter Blue subscriptions) who will unwaveringly support the move just as they do every other hair-brained scheme from the soon-to-be-ex Chief Twit.
However, there is a subsection of Musk's following that gravitated to him as a figurehead for anti-wokeness, a movement associated with the alt-right and purveyors of online anti-social behaviors including misogyny, racism, and homophobia.
For these individuals, Yaccarino poses a threat; she’s a woman, to start with, but she’s also associated with the World Economic Forum (WEF), which is regularly targeted by conspiracy theorists. Additionally, Yaccarino has previously broadcast left-leaning rhetoric, from promoting mask-wearing and vaccination to tackling fake news.
Conversely, Twitter users have been quick to highlight her close association with former US President Donald Trump, serving a two-year term on the administration's council on Sports Fitness and Nutrition, as well as some of the more dubious accounts she's following.
Linda Yaccarino (@lindayacc), the woman who is reportedly the new CEO of Twitter, follows: – Chaya Raichik- Jesse Watters- Michael Shellenberger- Ron DeSantis- The Babylon Bee- Giorgia Meloni- Maye Musk- Catturd- Vivek Ramaswamy- Tulsi Gabbard- Bari WeissMay 11, 2023
Of course, other users were more than ready to point out that Yaccarino also follows a number of left-wing figureheads, including AOC.
Ultimately,It seems as though neither side is really happy about her appointment right now, but the proof will be in the pudding. For whatever remains of the Twitter we once knew and loved (or at least, tolerated), I certainly hope her slightly muddy political talking points are less newsworthy than the positive change she'll hopefully bring to the platform.