GM, Ford say they won’t run Twitter ads as they evaluate changes under Elon Musk | Rare Techy


Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter has many users, including big corporate advertisers, worried about changes to the site under the mercurial billionaire. Auto giants General Motors and Ford were among the first to say they would not start advertising on the platform until they understood the extent of the changes.

“We are engaging with Twitter to understand the direction of the platform under their new ownership,” the Detroit-based automaker said in an email late Friday. “As normal business with a major media platform change, we have temporarily suspended our paid advertising. Our customer service on Twitter will continue.

Ford “does not advertise on Twitter at this time,” said spokesman Said Deep. “We continue to evaluate the platform’s direction under new ownership.”

Like GM, it will continue to engage with Ford customers on the site.

The moves coincide with Musk’s attempt to reassure Twitter advertisers who may be concerned that his comments about free speech absolutist means the site is more welcoming to extremist views, racism and generally offensive content. Musk said Twitter can’t become a “free-for-all hellscape” before you buy, and tweeted on Friday that it would create a “content moderation board with very different views” to set new ground rules.

Both GM and Ford also want to take electric vehicle market share away from Musk’s Tesla, the world’s top electric vehicle brand. Advertising on a platform owned by a man who also runs a rival automaker creates an unusual situation. The French car manufacturer Citroёn mysteriously admitted this to tweet on Friday.

“Welcome to a social media platform owned by one of our competitors,” the company said without elaborating.

Hyundai and Kia, which are also aggressively increasing sales of motor vehicles, could not immediately comment on the matter.

Smaller electric vehicle companies, including Lucid, Rivian and Fisker, told Forbes they have no plans to change how they use Twitter. All three are in launch mode, especially Fisker, which will launch its first model, a battery-powered ocean SUV, next month.

However, Fisker CEO and co-founder Henrik Fisker, who has had legal and professional clashes with Musk, deleted his personal Twitter account in April after the platform accepted Musk’s buyout offer.

GM’s move was previously reported by CNBC.


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