— Benjamin Netanyahu – בנימין נתניהו (@netanyahu) September 18, 2023
“X owner Elon Musk today floated the idea that the social network formerly known as Twitter may no longer be a free site. In a live-streamed conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, Musk said the company was “moving to a small monthly payment” for the use of the X system. He suggested that such a change would be necessary to deal with the problem of bots on the platform.
“It’s the only way I can think of to combat vast armies of bots,” explained Musk. “Because a bot costs a fraction of a penny — call it a tenth of a penny — but even if it has to pay…a few dollars or something, the effective cost of bots is very high,” he said. Plus, every time a bot creator wanted to make another bot, they would need another new payment method.
Musk didn’t say what the new subscription payment would cost, but described it as a “small amount of money.”
During the conversation, Musk also shared new metrics for X, noting the site has now 550 million monthly users, who generate 100 to 200 million posts every day. However, it wasn’t clear if Musk is counting automated accounts — that is, either good bots like news feeds or bad bots like spammers — among those numbers.