Former advertising executive is Twitter’s next CEO

Category: AI Americas Europe
Posted by Lea Hogg

Veteran advertising executive Linda Yaccarino has been named as Twitter‘s new CEO by Elon Musk. In six weeks, she will start working at the social media platform with a focus on business operations.

The news has been expected because in December last year Musk announced that he will relinquish his position as CEO in December. He is also quoted as saying that the person who would accept the challenging role would be someone who is “foolish enough to take the job”.

The wait has ended, according to Musk. Yaccarino, an advertising executive at NBC Universal, will shortly take charge of the social media site.  For the last 12 years she has been working for the massive entertainment company that owns NBC TV Network and Universal Film Studio for the past 12 years.

I am excited to welcome Linda Yaccarino as the new CEO of Twitter!  @LindaYacc will focus primarily on business operations, which I will focus on product design and new technology”.  Elon Musk, Founder and CEO – Twitter

Executive Chair at Twitter

Musk bought Twitter for US $44 billion however earlier this year he admitted that Twitter had suffered a massive decline for advertising revenue streams. Advertisers have literally abandoned the platform as they were concerned that their ads would appear with inappropriate content. The company also lost nearly 80 percent of its workforce.

The running of the company will be the responsibility of Linda Yaccarino and Musk will assume the role of Executive Chair with responsibility for IT and infrastructure. He has become somewhat of a controversial figure since declaring himself as a “free speech absolutist”. Advertisers were disgruntled and preferred to be cautious. As advertising is Twitter’s main source of income, this caused many problems.

Banned accounts were reinstated

Accounts that were previously banned such as those belonging to Donald Trump and misogynist influencer Andrew Tate were reinstated by Musk.  A subscription service known as Twitter Blue was also rolled out last year but it turn out to be chaotic after scammers started to create fake accounts for brands and public figures and verifying them for US $8 a month.

Twitter was incorporated into a new shell company called X Corp last month. Musk says that Twitter is an “accelerant” for creating X, his “everything app”.


Who is Linda Yaccarino?

The mother-of-two has been running a multi-billion-pound advertising operation at entertainment giant NBC Universal. Yaccarino, 65, shares similar political views with Musk who has been advocating for free speech since his takeover of Twitter. Former colleagues says that she is “as hard as nails”.

She grew up in Long Island, New York to working class Italian parents. Her father was a police officer and she attended a girls’ Catholic School. She graduated from Penn State University in 1985.

For the last thirty years she has been known as the power broker for Madison Avenue’s advertising. Having one of the biggest jobs in advertising, it is evident that Musk will be focussing on bringing those advertisers back. She has told those close to her that she has already been focussing on “wooing” advertisers to return to Twitter”.

Yaccarino is a conservative and a critic of the “woke discourse”, a terms used by conservatives to describe left-wing and socially progressive groups.

Outside of work, she was heavily involved in the World Economic Forum‘s Taskforce on Future of Work which she now heads.

Yaccarino’s main challenge will be to work with 51-year-old Elon Musk who is reputed to be very unpredictable and difficult to deal with.


Ambitious plans for Twitter’s future

Former President Donald Trump appointed Yaccarino twice on the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness and Nutrition where she joined Republican politicians and staunch supporters of the Trump presidency.

Musk has far from given up on Twitter and with the appointment of Yaccarino he hopes that Twitter will reach new heights with his main focus to revamp the social network into “Twitter 2.0”.

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