Elon Musk had some harsh words for advertisers fleeing platform X.
“Go f**k yourself,” Musk, owner of X, said during a Wednesday afternoon appearance at The New York Times DealBook Summit.
As reported by Fox Business, Musk made the comment while being interviewed by Andrew Ross Sorkin, speaking about the current advertiser boycott of the social platform.
“What this advertising boycott is going to do is, it is going to kill the company,” Musk said.
“And the whole world will know that those advertisers killed the company.”
Musk also appeared to take a shot at Disney CEO Bob Iger, who had earlier discussed Disney pulling advertising from the platform.
“Don’t advertise. If someone is going to try and blackmail me with advertising? Blackmail me with money? Go f**k yourself,” Musk said, adding: “Go f**k yourself, is that clear? Hey Bob, if you’re in the audience. That’s how I feel, don’t advertise.”
The CEO of X, Linda Yaccarino, appointed by Musk, observed the interview from the front row “stone-faced”, The Hollywood Reporter said.
And, of course, the internet responded swiftly, with varying opinions on Musk’s remarks, including support for his unfiltered approach and criticism for potential damage to his reputation and companies.
Most notable of the responses came from English broadcaster Piers Morgan, who tweeted: “Brilliant …”
Another user asked, “Can you blame the guy? Never catches a break, calls for peace and is told he’s pro-Russian.
“Wants to save the world, get humans in space, and cement free speech …
“Yet he’s still pulled apart and his motives questioned, pretty hilarious. Legend imo”
But another suggested, “he needs to stop replying to comments from people making racist statements and legitimising them while making wild conspiracy-like comments”.
And another user asked bluntly: “he’s got to be high, right?”
Musk apologised for endorsing a social media post widely seen as anti-Semitic, describing it as “literally the worst and dumbest post that I’ve ever done”.
In a comment on X, formerly Twitter, Musk on November 15 called a post “the actual truth” that said Jewish communities advocated a “dialectical hatred against whites,” which was criticised as echoing longtime conspiracy theory among White supremacists.
The statement prompted a flood of departures from X of major advertisers, including Apple, Disney, Comcast and IBM who criticised Musk for anti-Semitism.
“I’m sorry for that tweet or post,” Musk said Wednesday. “It was foolish of me.”
He told interviewer Andrew Ross Sorkin that his post had been misinterpreted and that he had sought to clarify the remark in subsequent posts to the thread.
Musk, who met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a visit to Israel earlier this week, insisted in the interview that he holds no discrimination against Jews, calling himself “philo-Semitic,” or an admirer of Judaism.
During the interview, Musk wore a necklace given to him by a parent of an Israeli hostage taken in the Hamas attack on October 7.
The necklace reads, “Bring Them Home.” Musk told Sorkin that the Israel trip had been planned earlier and was not an “apology tour” related to the controversial tweet.
— with AFP, Fox Business