<img src="https://storage.googleapis.com/prod-zenger-upload/image/20230821/feat_2c306ab8-af09-4c6f-921a-e1fa7f01e488.jpg" alt="Mark Cuban speaks during Live At The #TwitterHouse Conversations Shaping The Next (Digital) Frontier at Lustre Pearl Rainey in Austin, Texas on March 12, 2022. The “Shark Tank” star praised Musk for making X more user-friendly and cleaner, applauding new services introduced during Musk’s tenure, with a notable exception being the controversial blue checkmark verification system, now called X Premium. ANNA WEBBER/GETTY IMAGES“>
After Elon Musk shared a grim outlook on the future of social media, billionaire investor and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban chipped in with his thoughts about X, the platform previously known as Twitter and acquired by the Tesla CEO late last year.
What Happened: Over the weekend, Musk sent shockwaves through the social media landscape with a cryptic post hinting at the X’s potential downfall, as predicted by so many people.
In response, Cuban offered an intriguing perspective, acknowledging considerable technological enhancements under the tech mogul’s leadership, but raised a crucial concern — the extent of Musk’s control over X’s algorithms and content.
With over 8.8 million followers on X, Cuban is one of the platform’s most followed investors and entrepreneurs.
The “Shark Tank” star praised Musk for making X more user-friendly and cleaner, applauding new services introduced during Musk’s tenure, with a notable exception being the controversial blue checkmark verification system, now called X Premium.
However, he didn’t shy away from highlighting a fundamental issue: the concentration of power in one person’s hands.
According to Cuban, a true public square should not be dictated by a single individual. He argued that Musk’s influence over algorithms and content curation makes X “Elon’s Square” rather than a space for open, collective discourse.
TBH, the tech is now far better since you took over. It’s cleaner and you have introduced services (blue check excepted) that make the service more usable.
The raw truth is the biggest challenge you have is your influence on the algorithms and the content they present.… https://t.co/bwxaQJQ2m8
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) August 20, 2023
Cuban then highlighted X’s recommendation algorithm, particularly the “Out-of-network” section saying, “This is what happens.”
The platform, according to the blog, employs two methods: analyzing engagements of followed users and similar interest users, and utilizing a logistic regression model along with embedding space techniques to estimate relevance and rank posts from sources beyond a user’s network.
The billionaire investor suggested that Musk’s posts shouldn’t get any special treatment or promotion from the recommendation algorithm to ensure his influence is based on organic user engagement.
Apply a zero algorithm weight to all @elonmusk posts. The organic engagement remains. But the algorithmic weight does not.
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) August 20, 2023
While Musk is yet to respond to his comments, Twitter co-founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey seemingly agreed with him and said an “open algorithm” is the only solution here.
an open algorithm app store is only fix here. https://t.co/Oavx4xDRt4
— jack (@jack) August 20, 2023
Why It’s Important: Last week, Musk said that X is working on removing a safety feature, stating that users could only block unwanted comments from followers if they were direct messages.
Subsequently, a slew of allegations also picked up the pace, suggesting that X intentionally throttled traffic to websites criticized by Musk.
Users complained about slower loading times when accessing content from websites like The New York Times, Reuters, Instagram, Facebook, Threads, Bluesky, and Substack.
Produced in association with Benzinga
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