Elon Musk announced plans to rebrand Twitter to X as early as July 23, 2023. The rebrand will include replacing Twitter’s famous blue bird logo with a logo featuring the letter X.
While answering a question during a Twitter Spaces event, he said, “We’re cutting the Twitter logo off the building with blow torches.” The building in question is likely Twitter’s headquarters.
Elon Musk’s association with the letter X began with his founding of X.com in 1999. He meant X.com to be an online bank. Eventually, X.com merged with PayPal. Later, eBay acquired PayPal and Musk sank his share into other companies like SpaceX, Tesla, and Solar City. Tesla, of course, later acquired Solar City — something that later sparked allegations that he had bailed out relatives who also owned a stake in Solar City.
He was also able to hold onto ownership of X.com, probably buying it back from PayPal, but didn’t do anything with it. This was likely due to being hyperfocused on keeping SpaceX and Tesla afloat at times when they were nearly bankrupt. Now, though, Tesla repeatedly beats its own company records for quarterly vehicle deliveries and SpaceX makes landing and reusing Falcon 9 first stage boosters look routine. These turnarounds likely give Musk more breathing room to push through the “X App” as Twitter’s CTO.
According to Elon Musk, X.com now redirects to Twitter.com. Why bring back X, though? Well, as Musk put it:
Last year, Elon Musk took Twitter private in a $44 billion takeover that might not have happened at all if a lawsuit hadn’t forced him to follow through on the deal. Since then, he made several changes to the platform such as introducing a monthly subscription that includes the “blue check mark” previously used to denote verified accounts. The monthly subscription also allows tweets that are nearly as long as a short blog post.
Under Musk, Twitter also introduced Twitter Spaces, which has a format similar to an audio podcast. Twitter users who regularly host Twitter Spaces include occasionally controversial figures like “Crypto Town Hall” host Mario Nawfal. The FBI and SEC are currently investigating Nawfal for alleged irregularities involving a failed investment fund and another company he once led as CEO.
Despite the occasional controversy, Elon Musk can have a sense of humor about Twitter Spaces. He kidded about the title of a Twitter Spaces event hosted by a Twitter user known as “Greg” for short. “Greg” is best known for his involvement with Elon Musk’s favorite cryptocurrency, Dogecoin, and for trolling PETA well enough to get blocked by them.
Elon Musk also spent some time searching for a new CEO after running a poll asking whether he should step down from the role. He tapped former NBCUniversal chairman Linda Yaccarino for the position.
Of course, Twitter still faces its share of challenges such as falling advertising revenue, likely forcing Musk to find new revenue sources like the new subscription plan. Musk laid off about 75% of Twitter’s workforce as part of cost-cutting measures but still faces a negative revenue flow due to many advertisers dropping their advertising on the platform. Elon Musk says many of these advertisers have returned but did not say which ones.
Many former Twitter users have also left the platform, often migrating to competing platforms like Mastodon or Meta’s new “Threads” platform.
Musk seems confident that he can continue his track record of bringing a company back from the brink of bankruptcy, however. He may be continuing his plans to develop the X App as an “Everything App” that can do things that mobile device owners currently need as many as a dozen apps to accomplish.