X Could Soon Stop Displaying Headlines on News Articles, Says Elon Musk
X Could Soon Stop Displaying Headlines on News Articles, Says Elon Musk

Elon Musk is pushing to change how news links are displayed on his social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, in a move that could cripple news publishers’ ability to reach audiences.

In a post late Monday, Musk said X plans to remove headlines and text while retaining only the main image that shares links to news articles on the platform.

The move could be an attempt by Musk to get users to spend more time on the X and push them to opt into the subscription service for more details.

It was unclear how the move would affect advertisers on the platform, which Musk claimed in July had 540 million monthly users.

Currently, news links appear as “cards” on a user’s timeline, complete with an image, source address, and a short title. Such packaging helps attract clicks and helps publishers gain readers.

But with the shortened link, users could end up writing some text in the post, and they could finally consider X’s premium service, which allows individual posts to contain up to 25,000 characters.

With these changes, Musk sees X as a more relevant platform for content creators. Premium subscribers can now publish longer videos, their posts appear higher, and they also get a cut of ad sales.

The head of X also announced a few days ago that the “blocking” feature will be removed soon. The blocking feature on X allows users to restrict specific accounts from contacting them, seeing their posts, or following them. However, he mentioned that users can still block private messages.

© Thomson Reuters 2023

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