X/Twitter Follows Through On Elon Musk’s Plan To Remove Headline Links From News Articles

X/Twitter Follows Through On Elon Musk’s Plan To Remove Headline Links From News Articles

October 5, 2023

X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, went through with owner Elon Musk‘s plan to remove headlines from news articles, creating confusion among readers used to seeing easily identifiable links to stories.

Musk said in August that the change would be made to “greatly improve the esthetics.” But the change also may diminish traffic to stories posted by news outlets, whose staffs are among the most prolific users of the platform.

X/Twitter did not return a request for comment on the reasons for the change.

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The change was unveiled on Wednesday, in which only an article’s lead image can be seen. A news outlet’s website address does appear in the image, but there is no headline below the picture. News outlets can still give context to stories in the text of their tweets.

Reviews were brutal, with many saying it makes the site less functional, after other Musk changes that also have created confusion. Aidan McLaughlin, the editor in chief of Mediaite, posted an image of a Daily Caller story that, absent the headline, took on a different meaning. Without the headline, the post looked like an attack on Donald Trump, not a law clerk working on the former president’s civil fraud trial taking place in New York, as the article intended.

Although Musk said that the look of posts was the reason for the change, he’s also attacked news media outlets, . The Washington Post reported in August that X/Twitter had been slowing the speeds of links to The New York Times and Reuters, as well as Facebook and Substack. The outlets have been criticized by Musk and the other platforms are seen as his rivals. After the Post report, though, the delayed speeds were removed for some of the sites. Late last year, Musk suspended the accounts of a number of journalists who had reported on the controversy surrounding a user who reported on the X/Twitter owner’s private plane movements.

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X/Twitter Implements Elon Musk’s Plan To Cut Headline Links From News Articles

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