Walmart joins brands abandoning Elon Musk's social media platform X

02 Dec 2023

Walmart joins brands abandoning Elon Musk's social media platform X

In an announcement made on Friday, 1 December 2023, Walmart confirmed that it is no longer advertising on the social media platform X, becoming one of the latest brands to distance itself from the site owned by Elon Musk.

According to a spokesperson for Walmart, the company stated that they were not advertising on X as they had found other platforms to better reach their customers.

X, formerly known as Twitter, has been grappling with a decline in advertiser support. The platform faced a fresh wave of departures in recent weeks, largely attributed to mounting apprehensions regarding antisemitic content.

Despite repeated attempts, X did not immediately respond to inquiries regarding Walmart's decision. The silence from the platform's end raises questions about its strategy to retain advertisers amid the ongoing challenges.

Elon Musk's controversial statements have further fueled the platform's troubles. In early November 2023, Musk endorsed a user's false claim against the Jewish community, stating that the user was speaking "the actual truth." The user had referenced the "Great Replacement" conspiracy theory, alleging a coordinated effort to replace white populations with non-white immigrants, leading to a "white genocide."

Musk, in response to the backlash, apologized during an interview at a New York Times DealBook event. However, he also criticized advertisers who suspended their ads, accusing them of "blackmail." This has intensified the tension between Musk and the brands that have distanced themselves from X.

Industry insiders reveal a sense of frustration among X's ad sales representatives following Musk's outburst. Conversations with advertisers have reportedly been challenging, with little clarity provided by the platform's representatives.

Other brands such as Apple, Walt Disney, and Warner Bros. Discovery have also suspended their ads on X in November. The decision came in the wake of a report from the liberal watchdog group Media Matters, which highlighted ads appearing next to antisemitic posts on the platform.

As X faces a growing exodus of advertisers, the platform's future remains uncertain, raising concerns about its ability to address content-related controversies and win back the trust of major brands.

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