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Car brands pull their ads from Twitter as Elon Musk creates 'chaos and uncertainty'

A number of automakers are among the companies to have paused advertising with the social media company after Elon Musk took over.
A number of automakers are among the companies to have paused advertising with the social media company after Elon Musk took over.
Image: Reuters

Advertisers are grappling with Twitter's new ownership under Tesla boss Elon Musk, who once tweeted “I hate advertising”.

A number of automakers are among the companies to have paused advertising with the social media company. Ad sales accounted for more than 90% of Twitter's revenue in the second quarter.

General Motors, the largest US automaker, temporarily paused paid advertising on Twitter after Musk completed his takeover of the social media company. The Detroit automaker said it was “engaging with Twitter to understand the direction of the platform under their new ownership”.

Stellantis said it monitored all social media channels which involved its brands and would continue to do so in the wake of a new leadership at Twitter, where the world's fourth-largest carmaker would be “vigilant”.

Volkswagen — a conglomerate which includes brands such as Lamborghini, Audi, Seat and Porsche among others — said it had recommended its brands to pause paid advertising on Twitter until further notice.

A spokesperson for Ford told CNBC the automaker is not currently advertising on Twitter and had not been doing so prior to Musk's deal.

New owner Musk said on Friday Twitter Inc had seen a “massive” drop in revenue and blamed activist groups pressuring advertisers.

Musk last month said he wants Twitter to be “the most respected advertising platform” and not a “free-for-all hellscape”, in a bid to gain the trust of ad buyers ahead of the close of his deal.

Twitter  temporarily closed its offices and cut workers access to internal systems on Friday after telling employees they would be informed by email later in the day about whether they were being laid off.

Musk's first week as Twitter's owner has been marked by chaos and uncertainty. Two companywide meetings were scheduled, only to be cancelled hours later. Employees said they were left to piece together information through media reports, private messaging groups and anonymous forums.


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