Tech

Elon Musk says Apple, which hates freedom of speech, stopped advertising on Twitter and threatened to remove the app from its store

In the context: Elon Musk has chosen a new target for public outrage: Apple. Most of the tweets posted by the billionaire in the past 16 hours or so have been aimed at Cupertino, and it all started with Apple basically halting ads on the platform. The move led Musk to wonder if Apple hates free speech.

Musk’s long-promised cuts to Twitter moderation and his reinstatement of suspended accounts like Donald Trump are worrying advertisers. Some of them have reportedly paused or largely paused their ads on the platform, and it looks like Apple is one of them.

“Apple has basically stopped advertising on Twitter. Do they hate free speech in America?” Musk tweeted. He then published a series of posts criticizing Apple’s alleged censorship actions, as well as a 30 percent cut in everything sold on the App Store. The CEO also asked if Apple could go after Tesla.

Musk also confirmed that Apple had threatened to download the Twitter app from its App Store. No reason was given, but he later confirmed to a reporter that Apple was making moderation demands.

Both Google and Apple are said to be considering removing Twitter if it becomes free for everyone without moderation; Musk also talked about monetizing adult content on the site, as did OnlyFans. The owner says he will create his own phone if the companies decide to ban the app.

Apple is said to have been one of Twitter’s biggest advertisers, spending over $100 million annually on advertising. But the relationship began to look shaky when Apple CEO Phil Schiller recently deleted his account after Musk complained about the Cupertino fees, calling them a hidden 30 percent tax on the internet.

Being kicked out of the Apple Store would be a major blow to Twitter – it’s hard to imagine a phone built by Musk would help the cause. The situation is reminiscent of the Parler app currently being bought by Ye, better known as Kanye West. It was banned from the Google Play and Apple app stores after the attack on the Capitol on January 6 last year. Parler changed its policy and was reinstated by Cupertino a few months later in May 2021, while Google only brought it back last month, a full 18 months after the ban.

The keeper writes that a week before Musk bought Twitter (October 16-22), Apple spent $220,800 advertising the platform. Between November 10 and 16, that amount dropped to $131,600. Expect the amount he spends on ads to continue to decline in the future.




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