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Twitter (sorry, X) could go behind a paywall – POLITICO

Tech billionaire Elon Musk said he plans to start charging all users of X, his social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

“We are moving towards a small monthly payment for using System X,” Musk said at a press conference. conversation broadcast live with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday. “It’s the only way I can think of to fight vast armies of robots.”

Musk and Netanyahu discussed the rise of AI and ways to combat anti-Semitism and hate speech on X. The Tesla and SpaceX CEO said X currently has around 550 million monthly users posting between 100 and 200 million messages per day, and “some of them are going to be bad.”

Asked about ways to prevent fake accounts from amplifying hateful messages, Musk said putting up a paywall for the site was the “only defense” because a subscription would make it harder for bots to create multiple accounts using multiple credit cards.

“A robot costs a fraction of a penny…but if someone has to pay a few dollars or a minor amount, the effective cost of robots is very high,” Musk said.

Although Musk did not specify the monthly payment amount, he said he plans to offer a “lower rate” for users, different from X’s current premium subscription, which starts at around €9 per month .

Since acquiring Twitter in October 2022 for a whopping $44 billion, Musk has implemented a series of changes that have shaken users of the platform. Besides a radical shake-up of the company’s administration and the introduction of the premium subscription, the most notable change was the renaming of the app to X earlier this year.