Will Twitter survive the Elon Musk era?
Fox 5

A new study has revealed that the usage of the n-word has tripled in the first week of Elon Musk's Twitter takeover.

The new findings come from The Centre for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), with the founder Imran Ahmed saying the platform has become "a pustulant well of hate" under the ownership of the self-proclaimed "free speech absolutist" Musk.

In the week commencing October 31, the n-word was used 26,228 times – three times more than the 2022 average.

In the very same week, transphobic slurs rose with "t*****" being used almost 40,000 times, and homophobic language increased by 39 per cent.

The data comes after Musk's claims that "hateful speech" had dropped off following his takeover.

On November 4, the Tesla CEO tweeted: "Twitter's strong commitment to content moderation remains absolutely unchanged. In fact, we have actually seen hateful speech at times this week decline *below* our prior norms, contrary to what you may read in the press."

Sign up to our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

Speaking to Newsweek, the founder of the CCDH, said the notable increase in racist slurs on Twitter is a clear indication of the need for government intervention.

"Nobody wants a world in which people feel they can attack others with racial slurs with impunity. Elon Musk described such a world to advertisers as a 'hellscape' and said he would do anything he could to prevent it," Ahmed told the outlet.

"His head of safety said that they had successfully contained the situation, but our research shows this was untrue, which might explain why his head of safety abruptly resigned the day our research came out, showing that Twitter was awash with hate. Hate is a disease that will thrive wherever the immune system is weak."

Ahmed added: "Twitter has become a pustulant well of hate within our society under Elon Musk, and it's time we have an Online Safety Bill, so we can lance the boil that is Twitter and ensure that social-media companies cannot undermine our nation's unity."

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.


Please log in or register to upvote this article
The Conversation (0)