Elon Musk’s social media company, X, formerly known as Twitter, has lost millions in dollars of advertising following his endorsement of an Antisemitic post.
Less than 24 hours after Elon Musk endorsed an antisemitic post on X as “the actual truth” of what Jewish people were doing, IBM paused its advertising on the social media platform as X’s CEO, Linda Yaccarino, and others at the company scrambled to contain the fallout.
X employees said that they had gotten calls from advertisers wondering why Musk was making comments seen as antisemitic and why their ads were showing up next to white nationalist and Nazi content, according to internal messages that were viewed by The New York Times. IBM cut off about $1 million in advertising spending that it had committed to the platform for the last three months of the year, the messages said.
In a statement, IBM said it “has zero tolerance for hate speech and discrimination and we have immediately suspended all advertising on X while we investigate this entirely unacceptable situation.”
In a note to employees Thursday morning, Yaccarino said that “X is a platform for everyone” and that “discrimination by everyone should STOP across the board.” She said the company had been clear about its work to fight antisemitism and discrimination and later shared a similar message on X.
Musk, who bought Twitter last year and renamed it X, has faced increasing criticism that he has tolerated and even encouraged antisemitic abuse on his social media platform.
On Wednesday, Musk went further when he agreed with a post from an X account accusing Jewish communities of pushing “hatred against whites that they claim to want people to stop using against them.”
Jewish people are now “coming to the disturbing realization that those hordes of minorities that support flooding their country don’t exactly like them too much,” the account added.
“You have said the actual truth,” Musk replied to the post.
Jewish groups have compared the statement that Musk endorsed to the “Great Replacement Theory,” the far-right idea that minorities are replacing white European populations.
“It is the deadliest antisemitic conspiracy theory in modern U.S. history. To amplify it on @X is incredibly dangerous.” the American Jewish Committee, a U.S.-based Israel advocacy group wrote on X on Thursday
Social media platforms, in general, have faced rising scrutiny since Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7 and Israel retaliated. Antisemitic and Islamophobic hate speech has surged across the sites and has been especially prominent on X, according to the Anti-Defamation League.
In September, Musk met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a Tesla factory in the San Francisco Bay Area after facing accusations of antisemitism.
“It’s not an easy thing to be maligned — I know you’ve never seen that, right?” Netanyahu asked Musk at one point.
“Me, maligned?” Musk said, laughing. “Never.”