X could lose $75 million in ad revenue after a litany of controversies from Elon Musk, including his endorsement of antisemitic comments, report says

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X could lose $75 million in ad revenue after a litany of controversies from Elon Musk, including his endorsement of antisemitic comments, report says
X owner Elon Musk is facing backlash after he endorsed an antisemitic post on the site.Kirsty Wigglesworth/Getty Images
  • X could lose up to $75 million in revenue as advertisers flee the platform.
  • It comes amid backlash over Elon Musk's endorsement of an antisemitic post on the site.
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Elon Musk's endorsement of an antisemitic post may cost X millions of dollars in advertising revenue this year.

The social media platform could lose up to $75 million in ad revenue by the end of 2023, according to internal documents from X's sales team viewed by The New York Times, as advertisers pull the plug amid growing concerns over antisemitic content on the site.

The crisis is putting X CEO Linda Yaccarino — who was brought in to repair relationships with advertisers — under serious pressure, with the former NBC ad chief reportedly being urged by fellow executives to resign to "save" her reputation.

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Elon Musk has been widely condemned after he endorsed a post on X that accused Jewish communities of pushing hate against white people. A White House spokesperson described it as an "abhorrent promotion of Antisemitic and racist hate."

IBM announced earlier this month that it would halt spending on X after a report from nonprofit Media Matters found that the company's ads were running alongside pro-Nazi content.

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Other advertisers, including Apple, Disney, and NBC, swiftly followed.

X's internal documents, which were reviewed by the Times, list more than 200 advertisers who have paused or who are "at risk" of pausing spending on the platform. This list reportedly includes big names like Amazon, Netflix, and Coca-Cola.

At least 100 names have already chosen to halt advertising on X — according to the documents — and some of these did so on or after November 15, when Musk endorsed an antisemitic conspiracy theory on X, per the NYT.

Some of these advertisers were spending big money on X. Netflix's ads were worth around $3 million, according to the NYT, and collectively halted ads from various divisions at Microsoft could cost X more than $4 million.

Netflix and Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider, made outside normal working hours.

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In a statement to the Times, X said that only $11 million in revenue was at risk, and that the figure was likely to change as advertisers returned to the platform.

In a note sent to X employees last week shared with BI, Yaccarino acknowledged that some advertisers had paused their investments, but said that the company was committed to fighting antisemitism and "protecting free speech."

"For all of us who work at X, we've been extremely clear about our efforts to combat antisemitism and discrimination, as there's no place for it anywhere in the world," she wrote.

X did not immediately respond to a request for comment from BI, made outside normal working hours.

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