Elon Musk versus Mark Zuckerberg: a rivalry that goes beyond Twitter and Threads

Rivalries are common in life, work, and especially in the business world. Millionaires like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates used to go up against each other, but can you imagine a cage match between Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg, two of the biggest leaders in the tech industry?

Although it may sound crazy, it is something that could happen. In fact, according to media reports such as The New York Timesadvisers on both sides are preparing the details for what would be the fight of the year, with the intermediation of none other than Dana White, president of the UFC.

Preparations for this fight are underway, and only the passing of days will confirm if it will really take place on the scheduled date: July 27. However, it seems that the founder of Meta has struck the first blow in anticipation of the meeting.

Your company has just released Threads, a new app that bills itself as “an open and welcoming platform for discussion,” in the words of Adam Mosseri, CEO of Instagram. This application largely resembles the architecture of Twitter and already has millions of registered users.

Although we cannot say that this blow has knocked out the businessman who owns Tesla, it definitely seems to have affected him. Twitter CEO Linda Yaccarino came to her team’s defense, commenting in a tweet: “We are often imitated, but the Twitter community can never be duplicated.”

Musk reacted, and he did so in his characteristic style. In accordance with AFPin a letter to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg published by the news outlet traffic lightMusk’s attorney, Alex Spiro, accused the company of “unlawful misappropriation of Twitter’s trade secrets and other intellectual property.”

According to the letter, Meta would have hired dozens of former employees of Musk’s company who “had and continue to have access to Twitter’s trade secrets and other highly confidential information.”

The deputy editor of The VergeHeath, Alex Heath, said he had access to Meta documents indicating the company took advantage of the controversy on the rival social network, which arose by limiting the number of tweets users could see per day. That was the catalyst to anticipate the arrival of Threads.

Among the advantages of the new platform are: texts of up to 500 characters (Twitter only allows 280), videos of up to five minutes in length and greater control over mentions. Also, the new network is not starting from scratch, but rather works in partnership with Instagram; the user uses the same account to register and can choose to keep all their contacts.

Zuckerberg has no plans to monetize the app yet, unlike Twitter, which is already moving in that direction. His priority is to reach one billion registered users on Threads, and he will evaluate that possibility later. The enmity between these two tycoons is not recent and has been increasing over time.

The relationship between Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg began to deteriorate in 2016, when a SpaceX rocket explosion destroyed a Facebook satellite. On that occasion, Mark expressed being “deeply disappointed” by the failure of SpaceX.

In 2017, when the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) was looming, both businessmen had disagreements regarding the role of this technology. In a Facebook Live, Zuckerberg noted: “I have pretty strong opinions on this topic. Especially with AI, I’m very optimistic and I think people who are naysayers or trying to create doomsday scenarios… I don’t understand them. It’s negative and in some ways I think it’s pretty irresponsible.”

This comment referred to the position of Musk, who viewed the unregulated advancement of AI with suspicion. “I’ve spoken to Mark about this,” he responded in reference to a tweet about Zuckerberg’s comments. “His understanding of the subject is limited,” he said.

In 2018, in the aftermath of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which the company was accused of inappropriately sharing the data of 87 million users with political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, Elon Musk took action by deleting SpaceX and Tesla’s accounts from Facebook.

Two years later, the South African businessman urged Facebook users to remove the app, this after British actor Sacha Baron Cohen expressed concern that a company had access to the information of 2.5 billion people.

The feud between Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk also has to do with their egos. Although the Tesla founder ranks second on the list of the world’s richest people, with an estimated net worth of $180 billion, and the Meta leader is in 16th place, with a net worth of $64 billion, both pride themselves on being the top earners so far this year.

Musk increased his net worth by $96.6 billion through June 30, while Mark Zuckerberg added a total of $58.9 billion. Tesla and Meta shares have appreciated on the stock market.

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Elon Musk versus Mark Zuckerberg: a rivalry that goes beyond Twitter and Threads