New Twitter CEO Linda Yaccarino Posts Thread On Her Leap From NBCUniversal: “The Global Town Square Needs Transformation”
Linda Yaccarino, whose jump from a longtime exec perch at NBCUniversal to CEO of Twitter on the eve of the upfronts last month still has the industry abuzz, posted a thread to explain the motivation behind the move.
“People keep asking me: Why Twitter?” she wrote in the start of the thread (read it below). In the thread, she doesn’t address advertising specifically, but instead says her main priority is “transforming” the social media company in light of Musk’s longtime calls for fewer restrictions on speech.
Yaccarino officially begins her new role this week, having left NBCU abruptly during rehearsals for its upfront presentation to ad buyers. From Day 1 atop Twitter, she will face a wide range of challenges, chief among them repairing relationships with advertisers who paused or halted spending on the platform after Elon Musk acquired it last fall for $44 billion.
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“Have you ever been talking with someone particularly insightful and thought, you should have the freedom to speak your mind”?, Yaccarino wrote. “We all should. Enter Twitter 2.0.”
Twitter, she continued, “is on a mission to become the world’s most accurate real-time information source and a global town square for communication. That’s not an empty promise. That’s OUR reality.
“We have the opportunity to reach across aisles, create new partnerships, celebrate new voices, and build something together that can change the world. From what I can tell so far, we’re built for this.”
Many of the initiatives Musk has implemented, from a paid-verification blue-check system to welcoming back account holders who were banned under the previous regime for various content-related reasons, have raised concerns in the ad community. Ad revenue has reportedly slumped 40%, though Yaccarino’s track record and strong relationships are being counted on to move the needle.
As CEO, Yaccarino will have broader responsibilities than advertising, however, and must also restore company morale shredded by the layoffs of thousands of employees, including many members of the senior management team. The company has been valued at just one-third of what it was when Musk bought it, based on a recent disclosure from an investor.
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