Five months after launching a poll about whether he should step down as Twitter CEO, Elon Musk has announced plans to hire a replacement. On Friday morning, he formally named NBCUniversal ad chief Linda Yaccarino as his successor, who just left her post at the company. Despite the change in title – Musk will now be the executive chairman and chief technology officer, and claims he’ll still oversee “product design and new technology” – the move should divert some of his attention from Twitter.
Back in December, CivicScience polling found that 60% of U.S. adults thought Musk should step down as CEO – which came in a few ticks higher than his own Twitter poll on the matter. According to the latest CivicScience data, 49% of U.S. adults think his departing the post will be a positive development for the site – which more than doubles the 20% who think it’s a negative (30% claimed they’re ‘not sure’).
Daily Twitter users are the most likely to be opinionated about the news – they are more likely than the Gen Pop to think it’s a positive change (59%), but also more likely to think it’s a negative move (27%). Weekly Twitter users are similarly likely to think it’s a positive change (57%). This could be good news for the platform, given that data show these users are also the most likely to leave the platform for up-and-coming Twitter competitor Bluesky.
Separately, a strong majority of current users say their habits will be unchanged after the switch (61%) – and the percentage of users who will be ‘less likely’ to use Twitter exceeds the ‘more likely’ camp (22% compared to 17%) (n=2,421).
It remains to be seen how, if at all, a Yaccarino-led Twitter will differ from Musk atop the company as CEO, but Americans are currently much more likely to view it as a positive switch than not. CivicScience will continue tracking Twitter sentiment in the weeks and months ahead, and you can work with us to find the latest insights into how consumers and advertisers might respond to the change.