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Saturday, May 25, 2024

Elon Musk Considers Fee for New X Users to Fight Bots

Elon Musk, the owner of X (formerly known as Twitter), has hinted at implementing a small fee for new users who want to post content on the platform. This move is aimed at tackling the ongoing issue of spam and bot accounts.

Musk confirmed this possibility in response to a post by an X news account that discussed code hinting at a paywall for new users. He argued that “a small fee for new user write access is the only way to curb the relentless onslaught of bots.” He added that current methods like CAPTCHAs are easily bypassed by AI and “troll farms.”

While the exact details are yet to be finalized, some reports suggest an annual fee might be implemented. It’s important to note that this fee would likely only apply to users creating new accounts and wouldn’t affect existing users. Additionally, Musk mentioned in his replies that new accounts might gain free posting privileges after a three-month period.

This potential policy change comes after X implemented a pilot program last year in New Zealand and the Philippines. This program required new users to pay a $1 annual subscription to access certain features, including posting content and liking posts.

The idea of a fee has sparked discussions online. Proponents argue that it could be a viable solution to reduce spam and bots that spread misinformation and disrupt genuine user interactions. Opponents express concerns that it could create a barrier to entry for new users and limit free speech on the platform.

Whether or not X implements a fee for new users remains to be seen. However, this news highlights the ongoing challenges faced by social media platforms in maintaining a healthy online environment.

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