Elon Musk might be about to put X / Twitter behind a paywall.
The billionaire revealed he was considering charging every user during a round table talk with some high-profile politicians and businessmen overnight.
“We’re moving to a small monthly payment for use of the X system,” he reportedly said.
It’s all part of his plan to rid the platform of bots.
“The single most important reason that we’re moving to having a small monthly payment for use of the X system is that it’s the only way I can think of to combat vast armies of bots,” he told Social Media Today.
“Because a bot costs a fraction of a penny, or a tenth of a penny, but if somebody even has to pay a few dollars or something, some minor amount, the effective cost of bots is very high, and then you also have to get a new payment method every time you have a new bot.”
What this means is every user would have to verify themselves with ID and connect their profile to a bank account.
“We want it to be just a small amount of money, in my view this is actually the only defense against vast armies of bots,” he said.
Musk suggested the payment system would be a lower tier than X’s premium subscription, which is currently $8 each month.
While the plan would unlikely be received well by users, it doesn’t exactly come as a huge surprise.
Musk has been trying to eradicate bots from the platform since he bought it.
“Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” he said.
“I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans.
“Twitter has tremendous potential – I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it.”