Elon Musk's blue-check saga marks the beginning of the end for Twitter, top Tesla investor says

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Elon Musk's blue-check saga marks the beginning of the end for Twitter, top Tesla investor says
A top Tesla and Twitter investor has criticized Elon Musk's new verification plan.Getty Images
  • Top Tesla and Twitter investor Ross Gerber is not happy with Elon Musk.
  • He said Musk's decision to hand out free blue checks was the beginning of the end for Twitter.
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Top Tesla and Twitter investor Ross Gerber said the latest turmoil at Twitter could spell the beginning of the end for the company.

Gerber is the CEO of Gerber Kawasaki Wealth and Investment Management. He told Insider that Musk's recent decision to start handing out free blue checks to some users exposed the Twitter chief's hypocrisy, given his plans to replace a legacy verification system with a subscription service.

A subscription to Twitter Blue costs $8 a month, but many celebrities and news organizations have refused to pay.

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Twitter started its cull of blue checks from user accounts on April 20 as part of Musk's plan to abolish what he has previously described as a "lords and peasants system." The cull quickly descended into chaos as the return of checks to popular users prompted scorn and frustration.

Gerber said: "Elon went out of his way to insult people with blue checks as being entitled famous people, and implied that the system he was creating was this egalitarian free world where verification was just based off being you — and famous people wouldn't get this free privilege."

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He added: "So when he reversed himself he just looked like a total hypocrite, and then the way he did it was even worse because then he gave it to people with at least one million followers."

Gerber said the saga was creating another "class system" on Twitter, something Musk has said he wanted to rid the platform of.

The investor added that Twitter was in a further state of confusion after several accounts belonging to dead users had blue checks returned to their profiles. He said it was a decision that "makes no sense."

Gerber has previously been a vocal critic of Musk's reign at Twitter, suggesting that the burden of responsibilities the billionaire had taken on was a major distraction from his leadership at Tesla.

The EV-maker put Wall Street on alert last week after reporting first-quarter earnings. Musk signaled that he was ready to make an aggressive push for market share, which could come at the expense of short-term profits.

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Musk did not immediately reply to Insider's request for comment made outside of normal working hours. Twitter sent an automated response.

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