The billionaire tweeted: “Twitter has had a massive drop in revenue, due to activist groups pressuring advertisers, even though nothing has changed with content moderation and we did everything we could to appease the activists.
“Extremely messed up! They’re trying to destroy free speech in America.”
It comes as the world’s richest man – who completed his $44billion takeover of the socal media giant last week – was reportedly looking to axe about half of the social media giant’s 7,500 global workforce as he seeks to slash costs and impose a demanding new work ethic.
The announcement was delivered in an internal email to sent to staff. “In an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path, we will go through the difficult process of reducing our global workforce on Friday,” it said.
“Given the nature of our distributed workforce and our desire to inform impacted individuals as quickly as possible, communications for this process will take place via email,” the message added.
Some advertisers have begun to withdraw from the platform amid concerns expressed by some users that Musk’s plans for reduced content moderation to allow for greater free speech, and the removal of the free ‘blue tick’ user verification will spark an uptick in online abuse and misinformation.
The news will come as a blow to Musk’s ambitions to ramp up revenues generated by the firm, which are reported to include charging users a monthly subscription for “Twitter Blue,” a paid verification which will give their posts to the site greater visibility.
The blue tick subcription charge prompted a backlash from high-profile users, including the author Stephen King who tweeted he would be “gone like Enron” if Mr Musk imposed a $20 monthly fee that had reportedly been under consideration.
Responding to the Carrie writer, Mr Musk wrote: “We need to pay the bills somehow.”