In massive setback for Elon Musk’s X, Apple pulls ads over antisemitism controversy
Reports state that Apple has decided to follow in the steps of IBM by pulling ads from X after concerns over the platform’s growing antisemitism. This comes after Elon Musk supported a hateful post.
X (formerly Twitter) has once again found itself in troubled waters courtesy its billionaire owner, Elon Musk. Ever since the Israel-Hamas conflict began, the social media platform has been filled with hate posts, propaganda, and misinformation. But recently, brands have pulled the plug on advertising on the platform citing antisemitism as a big reason. Recently, IBM, Disney, Warner Bros., Discovery, and EU pulled ads, and now Apple has joined the list as well, as per a report. Incidentally, the big chunk of the advertisers exiting came after company owner Elon Musk replied in support of a post accusing Jewish people of hating white people.
According to a report by Axios, Apple decided to stop showing ads on the platform after Musk's endorsement of “antisemitic conspiracy theories” as well as Apple ads being shown alongside posts spreading ‘far-right' political ideologies. Earlier, the New York Times reported that Disney has pulled ads from X, while CNBC reported the same for Warner Bros., Discovery, Paramount, and ComCast.
The majority of the corporations have reportedly stated that their ads being placed next to “pro-Nazi” and “pro-Hitler” content was the deciding factor behind halting ads on the platform. In a statement given by IBM to The Verge, the company stated, “IBM has zero tolerance for hate speech and discrimination and we have immediately suspended all advertising on X while we investigate this entirely unacceptable situation”.
Apple joins others in pulling ads off X
Apple leaving the advertisers list is going to be concerning for the platform. As per another report by The Verge, Apple is one of the biggest spenders on X. It regularly purchased ads promoting new products and bought custom “hashflag” emoji animations for high-profile events.
In September, Apple CEO Tim Cook reflected upon the company's relationship with X in an interview with CBS Sunday Morning. He said, “There are some things about it I don't like”, and highlighted antisemitism as a problematic thing. While he added that Apple is constantly evaluating whether or not to advertise on X, it did not make any decision to stop at that time.