X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, is making it quite clear that its priorities don’t lie in making sure potentially harmful disinformation doesn’t spread on its platform.
On Thursday, Elon Musk’s social media company cut half of its election integrity team, according to a report from The Information. This firings saw X completely gut its Dublin, Ireland-based team, firing all four of its team members including X global head of election integrity Aaron Rodericks.
This move comes after X CEO Linda Yaccarino told the Financial Times just yesterday that the company was going to expand its election integrity division across the globe. X’s cutting of the election integrity team also comes amid other changes to the platform that removed the option for users to report disinformation and other misleading info to the company.
In a post on X, Elon Musk commented on the cuts, disparaging his own election integrity team.
“Oh you mean the ‘Election Integrity’ Team that was undermining election integrity?” Musk posted. “Yeah, they’re gone.”
Team lead Rodericks appeared to have a sometimes-tumultuous relationship with X, where he’s been engaged in a legal battle with the company regarding disciplinary action over a series of posts he liked that were critical of Musk and the company.
However, as Engadget points out, it was just a few weeks ago that Rodericks had posted on LinkedIn about how his now-former employer was seeking to beef up its curbs on disinformation, and was looking to hire for a civic integrity and elections lead.
“If you have a passion for protecting the integrity of elections and civic events, X is certainly at the center of the conversation,” he wrote.
Major elections will soon be taking place all around the world, including the upcoming 2024 U.S. elections. X users should be alert regarding what they read and see on the platform as Musk and company appear to make clear that users are on their own when it comes to the truth value of content.