X CEO Linda Yaccarino has resisted what Forbes labeled over the weekend a “groundswell of leading advertising executives” urging her to resign in the wake of antisemitic tweets by her boss, Elon Musk, and has reportedly doubled down on the company by enlisting her son in a desperate gambit to secure political advertising revenue.
According to Semafor, Yaccarino's adult son, Matt Madrazo, is leading a “two-person” team attempting to rebuild a political advertising revenue stream that was abandoned by the erstwhile Twitter several years ago. Madrazo’s sparsely filled out LinkedIn page lists him as the “lead client partner” for X.
News site Semafor’s scoop indicates tough early going for Madrazo and his team partner in securing interest from Democrats.
The news about Madrazo comes amid an active Monday for X, during which embattled owner Elon Musk made good on hyperbolic threats made over the weekend to sue nonprofit watchdog organization Media Matters. (You can read the suit here.)
The controversial Musk drew perhaps his biggest fireball of public backlash yet when he agreed to an antisemitic tweet on Nov. 15.
Since that time, major advertisers including Apple, Disney, IBM, Comcast, Lionsgate and Paramount fled the platform.
Although they didn't offer their reasons, Musk targeted Media Matters, claiming the platform falsely influenced these big sponsors to pull their support.
“Defendant Media Matters for America is a self-proclaimed media watchdog that decided it would not let the truth get in the way of a story it wanted to publish about X Corp,” reads the suit, which was filed in a Texas court.
Responded Media Matters president Angelo Carusone: “Far from the free speech advocate he claims to be, Musk is a bully who threatens meritless lawsuits in an attempt to silence reporting that he even confirmed is accurate. Musk admitted the ads at issue ran alongside the pro-Nazi content we identified.”
With X’s revenue support collapsing, Yaccarino was back in X’s San Francisco headquarters Monday, urging her team to think of new ways and means of generating revenue.
Far from stepping aside, Yaccarino tweeted what seemed like a renewal of vows to X and Musk.
What we’re doing at X matters and has everyone’s attention. I believe deeply in our vision, our team, and our community. I’m also deeply committed to the truth and there is no other team on earth working as hard as the teams at X. When you’re this consequential, there will be…November 20, 2023
Musk's polarizing behavior, meanwhile, threatens not just the vastly devalued but now privately owned X, but also publicly traded companies led by the billionaire, notably Tesla.
Investors remain concerned.
"I've never had this with any company I've ever invested in ever in my life where the CEO of the company himself does so many detrimental things that [are] destroying the brand," said Ross Gerber, head of Gerber Kawasaki Wealth and Investment Management, to Yahoo Finance.
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Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!