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Will Musk destroy Twitter? I do hope so

A “hero for our times”? Musk at a Halloween party. Taylor Hill/Getty

Elon Musk’s $44bn takeover of Twitter is “going better than I dared hope”, says Michael Deacon in The Daily Telegraph. Advertisers are pulling out; users are deserting the app; it’s haemorrhaging $4m a day. “With any luck the whole business will be bust by Christmas.” You might think me “absurdly two-faced” for yearning for Twitter’s demise, having used the app every day for 10 years. But that’s like saying to an alcoholic: “You claim to think that booze is ruinous and damaging. And yet you continue to drink it! What a hypocrite!” The sad fact is, as much as I despise Twitter, “I’m addicted to the infernal thing” – and I’m simply “too weak and pathetic” to quit.

The real problem with Twitter is that it “makes you feel like a celebrity ­– but with none of the upsides”. You don’t get the “groupies or the glamorous photo shoots”; just the “abuse and ridicule from complete strangers”, the “peculiar unsolicited messages” from madmen, and the “furious blowback” whenever you say something remotely contentious. It’s a “rancid taste” of what it’s like to be public property, without the money and the Oscars and the mansions to sweeten the deal. If Musk succeeds in running this “hellish, life-squandering website” into the ground, it will be his greatest contribution to society – his plans to build a city on Mars would pale in comparison. “He is a hero for our times, and I wish him every failure.”