Musk says blocking “makes no sense” but X disagrees

  • In the middle of the night Elon Musk declared that Blocking would be removed as a feature.
  • Despite users pointing out this could get X removed from app stores, the billionaire continues to suggest the feature will be removed.
  • X users, including Musk’s supporters have decried the removal of blocking as a feature.

Despite blocking the view of concert goers in Tokyo at the weekend so that he could test livestreaming out on X, Elon Musk doesn’t want users to be able to block other users.

As always, buried in his replies Musk announced at the weekend that “Block is going to be deleted as a ‘feature’, expect for DMs.”

“It makes no sense” the billionaire declared.

Both of those replies have since been hit with Community Notes pointing out that, “If the ability to block users was to be removed, X would be in violation of the policies of the App Store as well as the Google Play Store. Potentially, this could lead to X being removed from these platforms. There are no such policies for the web-app however.”

The billionaire who hopes to turn X into an everything app or a town square or the bastion of free speech or whatever his goal is when he wakes up this morning, spent the weekend talking up how the “Mute” function would be enhanced once Block is removed.

“…the obvious move is to strengthen the mute function by making anything posted by the muted account invisible to you. Right now, both mute and block are partly broken,” said Musk.

From what we can tell by piecing together the confusing litany of posts Mute will allow you to stop another account from interacting with you, but they will still be able to see your posts. While this seems fine, anybody who has ever been harassed knows it really isn’t.

A harasser still being able to view your content means they can screenshot it and then post that image to their followers in a bid to rile them up. There are ways to bypass the existing block mechanism such as creating a new account or logging out of the platform. That last one has mixed results though as there have been times where Musk forced visitors to log into Twitter to see content.

In short Muting will be like blocking. However, users will still be able to see your content unless you make your account private.

This move has not gone down well, even among Musk’s most vocal yes-men.

Even X’s own chief executive officer tried to do damage control by saying the team was building something better than blocking and muting rather than stating the block feature would be removed altogether.

It’s the latest in a long line of Musk making decisions in the middle of the night and his team needing to scramble and decipher what he meant.

The question many have is why this decision was even considered. Speculation has swirled that Musk is displeased with being one of the most blocked people on the platform and wants to do away with the feature. Others suggest that the decision came from folks blocking Premium subscribers as well as advertisers, hurting X’s bottom line. Others have even gone so far as to suggest Block would become a premium feature, much like SMS multi-factor authentication.

From the looks of things, Block is on its way out as X staffers are having to scramble to make Muting better, somehow.

Everyday Musk gives users another reason to leave the platform. Whatever he wants to build, it’s not going to be all that successful if folks keep leaving, a fact even the billionaire is aware of, even if it is buried among terrible stolen memes.


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