Major brands discontinue ad spending on X

Despite concerns about hate speech, the National Football League — a major ad partner — hasn't withdrawn ads from the platform
A screen capture of Twitters official page with an X on the profile image is seen in this screengrab obtained from a social media website. — Reuters/file
A screen capture of Twitter's official page with an "X" on the profile image is seen in this screengrab obtained from a social media website. — Reuters/file

Around a dozen major brands have discontinued their ad spending on X (formerly Twitter) over the appearance of antisemitic content and hate speech on Elon Musk’s social media platform.

The departure of the biggest advertisers from the platform could also be attributed to the upheaval stirred by a report published last week by Media Matter, which claimed that the platform is endorsing antisemitic posts by placing ads next to them.

Among the most prominent and biggest advertiser on the platform is Fox Sports, Ubisoft, Axios, TechCrunch and Paris Hilton’s 11:11 Media, taking the toll of exiting advertisers further high, CNN reported.

As the platform was already failing to attract back the advertisers who receded after Musk’s takeover last year, the exodus of major brands further worsened the crisis for the social networking platform.

Moreover, among other setbacks observed by the platform is the rapidly growing users of X’s archrival, Thread, following the push it’s getting after an official account of the White House was created last week on it.

Elon Musk, a day before the Media Matters research was published, reportedly endorsed an antisemitic conspiracy theory, leading to giant endorsers like IBM, Apple, and Warner Bros pulling their ads from the platform, Discovery and Sony.

IBM’s decision came after Musk had publicly endorsed an antisemitic conspiracy theory last week in a post on X. Similarly, Paris Hilton’s media company discontinued ads on the platform, one month after bragging about the partnership with X.

Despite concerns about hate speech, certain advertisers, including the National Football League, a major ad partner, have maintained their spending from the platform.

X later urged its advertising partners to back what it calls "freedom of speech." On Monday, X had initiated legal action against Media Matters, alleging that the organisation misconstrued the ads appearing alongside antisemitic content.

Later, X CEO Linda Yaccarino assured that the brand safety controls were in place that would prevent ad placement near objectionable content.