Elon Musk challenges advertisers who threatened to leave X (Twitter): "Go f*ck yourself"

The South African businessman spoke out about the controversy at the DealBook Summit in New York.

Elon Musk has been having some busy days at X, formerly known as Twitter. After some posts on the platform that were classified as antisemitic by many users, some advertisers decided to withdraw their advertising from the company. The South African businessman took the opportunity to respond to them during his participation in the DealBook Summit New York.

The aforementioned event was attended by leaders, high-level executives and globally recognized entrepreneurs, who spoke with Andrew Ross Sorkin. This year's edition was attended by Kamala Harris, Bob Iger, Tsai Ing-Wen, Kevin McCarthy and Musk himself, among many others.

When the Tesla CEO's turn came, he began addressing his comments which generated a wave of controversy on his social network, given that some considered them antisemitic.

He began by apologizing for what was written, stating that it was "it was foolish" and that "it might be the worst and dumbest post" he's ever written.

He then referred to those companies that removed their sponsorships from the platform, in what he defined as an attempted boycott. "If somebody is going to try to blackmail me with advertising? Blackmail me with money? Go f*ck yourself," he said, unleashing a moment of total silence in the auditorium.

"The whole world will know that those advertisers killed the company," he added, referring specifically to Disney, whose CEO also participated in the event.

The publications of the controversy led Apple and Disney to suspend their advertising with the company, even causing the closure of the account of Anne Hidalgo, mayor of Paris.

Yaccarino backs Musk

"X is enabling an information independence that's uncomfortable for some people," posted Twitter CEO Linda Yaccarino, regarding Musk's words. "We're a platform that allows people to make their own decisions."

Yaccarino, former head of advertising at NBC Universal, accepted her position at the social network with a mission to bolster the company's business operations. In her post, she explained that her "perspective when it comes to advertising" is that  "X is standing at a unique and amazing intersection of Free Speech and Main Street."