Just over a year ago now - in April, 2022 - Elon Musk announced his intention to buy Twitter. With Musk now at the helm, has user engagement improved, or declined? A Pew Research survey of 1002 Twitter users has found that the majority of active Twitter users are posting less - 25% less. This decline in user engagement is adding to questions about the future of the platform.
Twitter's most active users are posting less
With users less inclined to participate in discussions on Twitter, questions are being asked as to why?
- Algorithm Changes: there's speculation that feed changes may have inadvertently impacted user engagement or made it harder for the most active users to reach their desired audiences, leading to a decrease in posting activity.
- Elon Musk's Dominant Presence: Musk's ownership of Twitter has come with a dramatic rise in Musk content, often overshadowing other content. On average, US Twitter users mentioned Musk in a tweet just once in 4 months before Musk's platform acquisition. Since then, Musk users have referenced Musk 6 x in average. This has drowned out other conversations or has potentially led users to find alternative conversations lost in the noise generated by Musk.
- Polarization: A separate Cornell University study has found Twitter's emotionally divisive atmosphere is discouraging debate and amplifying animosity. This is turning some users away from the platform.
For advertising interest to improve for Twitter, Twitter must find ways to increase ongoing engagement and participation.