Wednesday, May 29, 2024
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It seems like Elon Musk’s infinite faith in X—formerly known as Twitter—might finally be running dry. The owner of the company—who is also the CEO of Tesla, and founder of The Boring Company and SpaceX—admitted the platform “may fail, as so many have predicted.”

Spectators have been watching to see if X will survive mass layoffs, advertisers leaving en masse, public scraps between Musk and former employees, and other major cost-saving efforts. Musk, the richest man on earth, posted on X last week: “There are no great ‘social networks’ right now.”

He continued: “We may fail, as so many have predicted, but we will try our best to make there be at least one.”

Unfortunately for Musk—who as recently as last week lost a host of major advertisers after their content was promoted on a pro-Nazi page—his vow to build a “great” platform came just before another embarrassing mishap.

X, which now operates with around 20% of the staff it did prior to Musk’s takeover, has suffered a number of service outages and glitches in recent months.

In February users found they were unable to tweet unless their posts had already been scheduled—with a message appearing for customers telling them they had gone over their tweet “limit”.

This issue was apparently caused by a Twitter staffer who accidentally deleted data from an internal service meant to prevent spam, according to reports from the New York Times.

During this weekend’s incident however, the platform saw some of the site’s most successful content temporarily become unavailable—including a famous selfie from the Oscars award show posted by comedian Ellen Degeneres in 2014.

In March of that year, the site acknowledged Degeneres’s photo was the most reposted tweet of all time with more than one million shares—at the time of writing that figure has increased to more than two million.

However, the image—a selfie that includes stars such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep and more—temporarily vanished over the weekend.

X did not immediately respond when approached by Fortune for comment.

‘History is being erased’

Reports began circulating on Friday that content from 2011 to 2014 wasn’t loading correctly—including images and links.

Fans of South Korean boy band BTS said they felt “important history was being erased right before [their] eyes” after they feared images of the musical group had been lost.

And even the X chairman himself isn’t immune to the disruption.

Reporters noted that images posted by the chairman between 2012 and 2013 aren’t loading correctly as of Monday morning, including one captioned “SuperDraco rocket engine fired at full thrust w a printed Inconel chamber. Used for Dragon escape & landing.”

However, instead of an image of the rocket, merely a shortened link for the image appears. This is one of a number of tweets posted by Musk a decade ago which are no longer appearing on the platform correctly.

But BTS fans and Musk supporters may not need to fear the images are gone forever. A tweet from Tom Coates, who was one of the first users to point out the glitch on Saturday, claimed that “Twitter has now removed all media posted before 2014.”

However a community note—a content moderation tool that is powered by users on the platform—counters: “Images before/around 2014 are still saved on Twitter/X’s servers, however, the links appear to be broken at the moment.

“The famous Ellen DeGeneres selfie from the 2014 Oscars is currently missing from her tweet. But the original file is still available on their servers.”

Usually, Musk addresses issues or new features on the site on his own platform, however on the image glitch he has remained silent.


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