musk tweeted his decision Tuesday night in response to an unscientific and non-representative poll he launched two days ago asking users whether he should step down as head of the company. More than 10 million people, or 57.5 percent of those polled, voted that he should leave the position.
Musk had previously said he would stand by the results of the informal poll he launched after even some of his own allies criticized some of Twitter’s recent policies. The poll was one in a series of public blows to his image since he landed the role. This month he was booed by the crowd when he took the stage at comedian Dave Chappelle’s show in San Francisco.
Six moments that defined Musk’s time as Twitter CEO
The entrepreneur, who also runs Tesla and SpaceX, took control of the social media company in October in a $44 billion deal. Musk has previously indicated that he has no intention of remaining at the helm of Twitter long-term.
Musk didn’t directly respond to the poll results for more than a day after the poll closed, but he did respond to several tweets that suggested the poll might have been infiltrated by bots or that it wasn’t a representative sample of it acted what the people wanted.
His lukewarm response to Tuesday night’s poll leaves the door open for him to hold the top spot indefinitely.
“Accurate assessment!” Musk responded to a tweet asking why the “offer to do this thankless job” would upset people.
Some Tesla investors had urged Musk to step away from the social media company in order to focus on the electric car company, which is struggling in the stock market. Shares of Tesla fell more than 8 percent during trading on Tuesday.
Musk’s time at the helm of Twitter has been one of upheaval and occasional chaos. The billionaire laid off thousands of employees, disbanded an outside group that oversaw online safety, and restored prominent suspended accounts, including that of former President Donald Trump.
No word from Musk on whether he will step down. He lost a poll he said he would stay on.
Musk’s moves were controversial among many Twitter users and advertisers, jeopardizing the company’s main source of revenue. But others had hailed his free speech agenda and urged him to stay on as chief executive.
Since taking over the company, Musk has used Twitter polls several times to make critical decisions, including whether to reinstate Trump. He also asked users if the company should offer “general amnesty” to suspended accounts, many of which then reappeared on the site.
Musk launched another poll Tuesday night, this time asking whether Congress should approve a $1.7 trillion deal to fund the government.
Cat Zakrzewski contributed to this report.