GM Pulls Twitter Advertising Temporarily

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey
gm pulls twitter advertising temporarily

When I posted Friday's QOTD, I was wondering if perhaps I was overthinking things. I wondered how Tesla boss Elon Musk owning Twitter -- a social-media platform used by Tesla's competitors -- would affect the automotive industry and the automotive press.

Apparently, I am not the only one with concerns.

Later Friday, CNBC and other outlets reported General Motors has suspended Twitter advertising temporarily in the wake of Musk's purchase of the platform.

“We are engaging with Twitter to understand the direction of the platform under their new ownership. As is normal course of business with a significant change in a media platform, we have temporarily paused our paid advertising. Our customer care interactions on Twitter will continue,” GM said in a statement.

GM has invested a lot of money to compete with Tesla -- and, of course, the gang of EV startups and the rest of the legacy automakers -- when it comes to EVs.

Now the company can, for the time being, avoid the awkwardness of advertising on a platform owned by a competitor's boss.

CNBC asked Ford about its plans, and the Blue Oval said it hadn't been paying for ads on Twitter even before Musk took over. Ford also said this to CNBC: “We will continue to evaluate the direction of the platform under the new ownership.”

Funny enough, CNBC showed Ford a promoted tweet that came from CEO Jim Farley -- I think I've seen that same tweet on my own feed -- and Ford said it wasn't sure when it, or any agency it works with, had last paid to advertise on Twitter.

Like GM, Ford said it will continue to interact with its customers on the platform.

Other automakers contacted by the outlet either refused to comment, or like EV startup Nikola, said they had no plans to change their current approach to Twitter.

Part of the uproar about Musk's takeover of Twitter has centered around his past rhetoric about "free-speech absolutism". Observers have suggested an unmoderated or lightly moderated Twitter could become overrun with trolls, bullies, and those who use bigoted speech to harass, and advertisers would not want to promote their companies alongside such speech.

Furthermore, if Twitter discourse degenerates too much, users could flee the platform, leaving it less lucrative for advertisers.

That, of course, is just speculation at this point, and Musk has promised that Twitter would not become a “free-for-all hellscape, where anything can be said with no consequences!” under his watch.

He has also talked about having an internal council for major content-moderation decisions, something Twitter apparently had even before Musk took over.

Each company will obviously have to make its own decision deciding whether to have an advertising presence on Twitter or not. GM, for one, has decided to be cautious and wait and see what happens.

[Image: GM]

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2 of 62 comments
  • Jwee Jwee on Nov 02, 2022

    Every free market and every free speech has rules and regulation. Without them, there is no freedom. The Bile, the constitution, are full of rules and regulation. The metric is honesty, the product wealth and wisdom.

  • John John on Nov 05, 2022

    Twitter may be worth getting now.

  • IH_Fever EV charger on a GM lot, probably with a Cummins generator to keep them running. A regular melting pot haha
  • Tassos Wake me up when VW (or any other loser "Legacy" automaker comes up with a "BETTER TESLA" BEV AT THE SAME PRICE. SO far, VW has FAILED MISERABLY AND LOST BILLIONS DOING IT. Its models are way underwhelming and inferior, and cost not much less than the model 3. ANd DESPITE the SCANDALOUS $7,500 tax credit, which is an INVERSE ROBIN HOOD, takes from the average household and gives it to the average BEV buying family, which has an income of $170k+, VW STILL FAILED.ALso notice the so-called "Mobility Officers" at FORD AND Renault QUIT. another HUGE SCAM, Autonomous Vehicles, they wasted 100s of billions (all idiot legacy makers together) and predicted billions of profits, but so far they DROWN IN A SEA OF RED INK with NOTHING to show for it. Morons will be morons, and the ones in this forum will cheer for their failures "AWESOME, WV, Indeed"! LOL!!!
  • Jwee More range and faster charging cannot be good news for the heavily indebted and distracted Musk.Tesla China is discounting their cars. Apart from the Model 3, no one is much buying Tesla's here in Europe. Other groups have already passed Tesla in Europe, where it was once dominant.Among manufacturers, 2021 EV sales:VW Group 25%, Stellantis at 14.5%,Tesla at 13.9%Hyundai-Kia at 11.2% Renault Group at 10.3%. Just 2 years ago, Tesla had a commanding 31.1% share of the European EV marketOuch., changed their data, so this is slightly different than last time I posted this, but same idea.
  • Varezhka Given how long the Mitsubishi USA has been in red, that's a hard one. I mean, this company has been losing money in all regions *except* SE Asia and Oceania ever since they lost the commercial division to Daimler.I think the only reason we still have the brand is A) Mitsubishi conglomerate's pride won't allow it B) US still a source of large volume for the company, even if they lose money on each one and C) it cost too much money to pull out and no one wants to take responsibility. If I was the head of Mitsubishi's North American operation and retreat was not an option, I think my best bet would be to reduce overhead by replacing all the cars with rebadged Nissans built in Tennessee and Mexico.As much as I'd like to see the return of Triton, Pajero Sport (Montero Sport to you and me), and Delica I'm sure that's more nostalgia and grass is greener thing than anything else.
  • Varezhka If there's one (small) downside to the dealer not being allowed to sell above MSRP, it's that now we get a lot of people signing up for the car with zero intention of keeping the car they bought. We end up with a lot of "lightly used" examples on sale for a huge mark-up, including those self-purchased by the dealerships themselves. I'm sure this is what we'll end up seeing with GR Corolla in Japan as well.This is also why the Land Cruiser has a 4 year waitlist in Japan (36K USD starting MSRP -> buy and immediately flip for 10, 20K more -> profit) I'm not sure if there's a good solution for this apart from setting the MSRP higher to match what the market allows, though this lottery system is probably as close as we can get.