Elon Musk attempts to debunk reporters but Twitter's own data proves him wrong

Elon Musk attempts to debunk reporters but Twitter’s own data proves him wrong

Elon Musk’s worst enemy could very well be his own website.

On Friday, Twitter owner Elon Musk began pushing back(Opens in a new tab) against reports that the company changed the platform’s algorithm to specifically boost Musk’s own tweets last week.

“Several major media sources incorrectly reported that my Tweets exceeded normal levels earlier this week,” Musk tweeted. “A review of my tweets likes and views over the past 6 months, particularly as a follower ratio, shows this to be false.”

Musk further explained that there was “a bug that briefly caused replies to have the same importance as lead Tweets, but that has now been fixed.” At the time, Musk was doing recognize(Opens in a new tab) a problem with the “algorithm”.

However, Musk’s claims are refuted by Twitter’s own data, which shows a surge in impressions of Musk’s tweets that align with the reported timeline for algorithm changes on Twitter.

Timothy Graham, researcher at Queensland University of Technology analysis(Opens in a new tab) the data, pulled directly from the official Twitter API, and find(Opens in a new tab) that impressions on Musk’s tweets increased by 737% on February 13, the day after the Super Bowl, shortly after the reported algorithm changes. In the days that followed, long after Musk’s tweet acknowledged an algorithm problem, daily impressions of Musk’s tweets nearly tripled.

Musk backed up his side of the story, tweeting what he called a “review” of his “Twitter likes and views over the past 6 months.” As evidence of this examination, he provided a screenshot(Opens in a new tab) of the 311 million impressions, one of his tweets – the one about putting cocaine back in Coca-Cola – received in April last year, and noted that none of his subsequent tweets had yet “approached” this number. But it’s worth noting that individual tweets from users with less than 1,000 followers regularly go viral and rack up millions of views.

As Platform(Opens in a new tab) First reported, Twitter engineers were tasked with making changes to the website shortly after the Super Bowl on Sunday after one of Musk’s tweets and a similar message from President Joe failed. Biden. The following afternoon, a Twitter “fix” was released that “artificially boosted Musk’s tweets by a factor of 1,000”.

Twitter’s algorithm change was so obvious that users started complain that their feeds were filled with tweets from Musk.

Either way, Musk is affirming(Opens in a new tab) that Platformer’s report was “false” and that the outlet’s source is a “disgruntled employee who had been on paid leave for months, had already taken a job at Google, and felt the need to poison the well on the way out” . Musk then claimed that Twitter would take legal action against the individual.

Platformer’s Casey Newton replied(Opens in a new tab) that Musk’s claims were inaccurate and that the outlet stood by its story.

This isn’t the first time Twitter’s own data has contradicted claims made by Musk or his defenders this week.

On Thursday, Musk fans incorrectly claimed that a mashable story regarding Tesla unsubscribing from Twitter Blue was wrong. A community note was attached to the Mashable tweet linked to the story insisting that since Tesla is a verified company with the gold checkmark, it couldn’t be a Twitter Blue follower to begin with.

Musk reported(Opens in a new tab) his support for this use of Twitter’s community notes in a tweet.

However, Twitter’s own data pulled from its official API showed that Tesla did indeed unsubscribe from Twitter Blue last week. Furthermore, the data provided(Opens in a new tab) examples of verified business accounts with gold checkmarks that are Also(Opens in a new tab) subscribed to Twitter Blue, refuting the claim that Tesla’s Twitter Blue subscription was not possible in the first place.

The community note was later removed from the Mashable tweet linked to the Twitter Blue story.

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