You Can Thank Twitter for Brazilby@sheharyarkhan
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You Can Thank Twitter for Brazil

by Sheharyar KhanDecember 6th, 2022
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Elon Musk thinks 'wokeism' may have clouded the judgment of his social media company's former management in the run-up to the elections in Brazil; CEOs at major tech companies are asking employees to do more; and New Zealand is planning to take on Google and Meta, following in the steps of Australia and Canada.

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Welcome to another edition of "Musk Said What Now?". Yup, Elon Musk, the world's richest man and newly-made owner of Twitter, keeps trending over the internet because of his hot takes and equally hot aversion to 'wokeism' which he now thinks may have clouded the judgment of his social media company's former management in the run-up to the elections in Brazil. 🇧🇷

ICYMI: Brazil elected a new president, a well-known leftist leader called Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva who was once praised by U.S. President Barack Obama as "the most popular politician on Earth." da Silva narrowly defeated strongman and ultra-orthodox incumbent Jair Bolsonaro in an election marked by rampant disinformation from both sides, so of course, Musk had to jump in.

Noting that he had "seen a lot of concerning tweets about the recent Brazil election," the billionaire, without elaborating, said it was possible that former Twitter employees gave preference to left-wing candidates.

Musk also spent a portion of last week cozying up to Apple CEO Tim Cook after claiming the iPhone maker planned to "withhold" Twitter from its app store. Of course Apple was going to do no such thing, and Musk claimed as much following his meeting with Cook to patch things up.

Meanwhile, Twitter corporate is doing away with manually moderating content in favor of letting machines do the heavy lifting. Supposedly, that and an email to brands incentivizing ad spending on the platform was enough for at least Apple and Amazon to resume advertising on Twitter. Or maybe billionaires just like rubbing each other's backs.

Twitter ranked #63 in this week's Tech Company Rankings. Amazon was a step behind at #64, while Apple ranked #5.

'Work or GTFO,' It's Not Just Musk. It's Everyone. 🤏

In an era of quiet quitting, a new report from Business Insider indicates that it's not just Elon Musk that's been telling employees to choose between working hardcore or leaving the company. It's practically every CEO at major tech companies.

Facebook? Check. Google? Check. Amazon? Check.

Given the thousands these tech companies have laid off in recent weeks, there's more pressure than ever for the remaining employees to work harder to justify remaining at the organizations. Never mind the fact that most of these tech companies went nuts during COVID-19 and hired aggressively in hopes that the growth in their business would continue.

Now they just want to course correct and leave workers to fend for themselves in an economy that's nowhere near what it used to be. So much for work-life balance.

Facebook continues to rank at the top of the Tech Company Rankings, while Google was trending at #4.

New Zealand Takes on Big Tech 🇳🇿

Britain's often forgotten and sometimes misunderstood colony New Zealand has decided to follow in the footsteps of bigger brothers Australia and Canada in introducing laws that would require Google and Meta to pay its media companies for the local news content that appears on their feeds.

While there's no doubt that just like in Australia and then Canada, the companies are going to campaign against such laws, it's equally possible that they might resign to their fates and accept that this is just where regulation is headed and that they need to stop profiteering off of other organizations' content.

Meta ranked #24 this week.

In Other News.. 📰

  • Good news for scalpers, bad news for consumers: iPhone shortages are expected to last throughout the Christmas season as the Chinese factory that produces the phones struggles to ramp up production. 📱
  • Kanye West's Twitter account was suspended yet again, this time at the behest of Elon Musk for violating Twitter's rules against incitement to violence (and definitely not because he posted an unflattering picture of the billionaire). 🐴
  • Neuralink, the health tech company Musk started to transplant chips inside the human brain, is planning to test said chips in actual humans starting next year. And to prove that it's totally viable and completely safe, Musk plans to get one himself. Lord knows if he can get any smarter than he already is. 💻
  • FTX's disgraced former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried (or 'SBF') feigned ignorance of the irregularities happening at his company and said that he did not willingly commit fraud. Also, this happened. 💲

And that's a wrap! This has been the tech company brief, and you were reading Issue #27! See y’all next week. PEACE ☮️

— Sheharyar Khan, Editor, Business Tech @ HackerNoon