Science, Technology, and Social Media

Elon Musk Promises ‘Thermonuclear Lawsuit’ Against Media Matters Amid Advertiser Exodus On X

Elon Musk announced Saturday that X Corp. will be filing a “thermonuclear lawsuit” against Media Matters, alleging the left-wing watchdog intentionally misinformed advertisers about the social media platform.

Media Matters claimed that advertisers on X regularly appear next to pro-Nazi content, and said that the social media platform has given a voice to “anti-Muslim bigots, white nationalists, and antisemites,” since Musk took over, according to a report from the organization. A number of major corporations have pulled their advertisements from X in the wake of the accusations, including IBM, Apple, Paramount Global and Disney, according to The New York Times.

The advertiser exodus led Musk to accuse Media Matters of attempting “to undermine freedom of speech and mislead advertisers,” and promise to file a lawsuit against the media watchdog “the split second courts open on Monday.”

“This week Media Matters for America posted a story that completely misrepresented the real user experience on X, in another attempt to undermine freedom of speech and mislead advertisers,” Musk said on X Saturday. “Despite our clear and consistent position, X has seen a number of attacks from activist groups like Media Matters and legacy media outlets who seek to undermine freedom of expression on our platform because they perceive it as a threat to their ideological narrative and those our their financial supporters.”

“These groups try to use their influence to attack our revenue streams by deceiving advertisers on X,” Musk said.

Musk alleges that Media Matters intentionally manipulated content to make it seem as though advertisers regularly appear adjacent to antisemitic posts on X, which is not the true experience of users on the platform. Musk underscored his fears that once “free expression is taken away, it is very dangerous to get back” and said that individual rights must be defended “as if our lives… depend on it.”

Media Matters has routinely fallen under scrutiny for publishing false information and attempting to censor conservatives.

“Far from the free speech advocate he claims to be, Musk is a bully who threatens meritless lawsuits in an attempt to silence reporting that he even confirmed is accurate,” Media Matters said in a statement on Saturday. “Musk admitted the ads at issue ran alongside the pro-Nazi content we identified. If he does sue us, we will win.”

X did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Jake Smith

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