New X Users Will Have to Pay to Post, Says Elon Musk

New X Users Will Have to Pay to Post, Says Elon Musk

Tech billionaire and X platform owner Elon Musk has announced new users might incur a small fee for using the platform, much to the disgruntlement of some users.

According to Musk, the move is meant to curb the influx of bot accounts on the platform, which it has “failed to curb.”

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An annual “small fee”

Responding to a query from a user on the platform, Musk, who is also Tesla CEO revealed the X platform, formerly Twitter will start charging a small fee to new users to allow them to post, like, or bookmark anyone else’s post.

The queries came after noticing text strings on the website that mentioned payment of a “small fee” annually.

This, according to the platform, will prevent new accounts from bookmarking, reposting, creating a new post, or liking another user’s posts on the platform, although users can still follow other accounts on the platform without paying a fee.

And Musk confirmed the development.

“Unfortunately, a small fee for new user write access is the only way to curb the relentless onslaught of bots,” wrote the tech billionaire.

Musk added this move will tackle the proliferation of bots on the platform.

“Current AI (and troll farms) can pass “are you a bot” with ease,” he added.

According to a Beebom article, the policy has been under testing in the Philippines and New Zealand as part of the “Not a Bot” initiative.

Three months probationary period

Musk further explained that this move will decongest the platform and cut on fake accounts that affects the platform’s credibility.

“The onslaught of fake accounts also uses up the available namespace, so many good handles are taken as a result,” he said.

Depending on one’s region, the fee could be around $1. In another post, Musk indicated new users will be able to create posts for free, but after waiting for a whole three months before they can enjoy that privilege.

The small fee is expected to stop the creation of bots and spam accounts. These have been a pain point on the platform, which Musk said took up “good handles” as well.

From free speech to fee speech

While Musk sees this as a way to control the menacing bots and spam accounts on the platform, some users feel this will only shortchange other genuine users.

Responding to the news, some users took a jibe at Musk for planning to charge for “free speech.” When Musk purchased the then Twitter for $44 billion, the tech billionaire indicated he wanted to turn it into a platform that promotes “free speech.”

However, with the developments, some users feel X is now promoting a “fee for speech.”

“At this point being alive has a cost,” responded Matt, while another user identified as Infinite Hologram likened this to “Literally renting your God given rights from an app…. So thirsty.”

Others however feel this is a good move as they have fallen victim to identity theft themselves.

“Will be great. I couldn’t use my real name even though it’s not a common name, it was taken probably by a bot (no posts ever),” wrote Kris Kashtanova.

Recently, the platform embarked on a program to get rid of spam accounts, which resulted in some users losing their followers.


Image credits: Shutterstock, CC images, Midjourney, Unsplash.