As CEO Elon Musk rebrands Twitter into X, we should have concerns over his vision for an “everything app”.
That’s according to Newstalk Tech Correspondent Jess Kelly, who told The Hard Shoulder it’s “very hard as a tech fan to get excited” over Mr Musk’s choices as Twitter (now X) CEO.
“You still got people who call the 3 Arena the Point Depot, so I don't know if you'll ever get to the full elimination of Twitter," she said.
Even if it will take a while for people to stop calling the app Twitter, Jess explained Mr Musk plans to create “an all-encompassing app” through Twitter.
“He saw the potential in Twitter to become the home of the internet essentially, whether you wanted to talk to friends, take photos, send money,” she said.
“The key issue here is that he’s fired everybody – he's gotten rid of loads of engineers, he got rid of loads of the safety and the policy teams.
“Although he may have this gorgeous vision, at the moment I don’t think he has the capacity to keep the current service running and build supplementary services on top.”
Rules and regulations
Meta’s so-called Twitter alternative Threads was not able to launch in the EU due to GDPR concerns, and Jess said Mr Musk will face the same issues.
“The longer-term strategic planning of this is going to be very difficult to do,” she said. “We know Elon Musk doesn’t have much time for rules and regulations.
“If Twitter wants to amalgamate itself alongside a payment tool... he is going to have to do data compliancy tests.”
Jess said Mr Musk’s vision for X is very similar to the Chinese app WeChat, which allows users to text, take photographs and pay bills.
“While that sounds fantastic, if you spend five minutes reading into the WeChat app that’s very successful and very widely use in China, you’ll see there’s a whole host of issues,” she said.
“There's huge levels of content suppression and censorship on that platform.”
She said giving so much digital power to one man could be concerning for our own digital freedoms.
“If you look at all the companies Elon Musk has and you look at what his vision is for the X, it is scary,” she said.
“I know this isn’t the nicest thing to do, but you do need to question the character of the person that will hold all of that power.
“He has acted on a whim so many times.”