Musk And Twitter's Open-Sourced 'Algorithm'

One month ago, Elon Musk said Twitter would open-source its "algorithm," meaning it would make public how the company selects which tweets gain traction on the platform. Surprise -- Musk did not do this.

On Monday, he made a similar announcement via tweet, but this time he included a date: March 31. That’s next week. Now, if Musk were to open-source the company’s algorithm –– something no other major tech giant has ever done –– what would that mean for brands and marketers?

Musk says his open-source plans stem from “transparency” and the urge to gain user trust. One reason tech giants like Meta have never published the full details of  their algorithms would be a general fear of increased spam attacks from users, who would have an increased understanding of how specific platforms rank content.

In this vein, scammers could flood Twitter more than they already do, making more of a public impact.

According to Social Media Today, “if retweets get a higher share score, scammers will come up with new methods to game that, the same with likes. And if Twitter does indeed open up the whole algorithm, as Musk implied, that could spark a new flood of spam tweets, based on specific types of engagement that Twitter’s optimizing for.”



The artificial intelligence boom, too, could contribute to scammers easily using tools like ChatGPT to automatically create myriad tweets that fit Twitter’s ranking system at specific times, around certain trending topics.

But couldn’t brands and marketers take a similar, albeit more authentic, approach? The number one tip for amplifying a brand on Twitter is to share relevant and useful content. This is vague advice, of course,  because we’re not entirely sure what the internal workings of Twitter value as “relevant” and “useful,” aside from the fact that including visuals helps gain traction.

Amid the catastrophe that is Twitter at this point, one thing Musk is being transparent about is how little he understands algorithms, which he tweeted as “algorithm” -- in quotes, yet.

“Our ‘algorithm’ is overly complex & not fully understood internally,” he wrote. “People will discover many silly things, but we’ll patch issues as soon as they’re found!”

Next story loading loading..