Having rebranded Twitter as ‘X’ recently, Elon Musk’s company made headlines when it seized the @x handle from its original owner, even if he didn’t seem too cross about it.
Someone who is cross, however, is Jeremy Vaught, who since 2007 has been the owner of the @music handle on Twitter. Until now. CNBC reported that the company has now reclaimed this username too, leading Vaught to declare that “the whole thing is just skeezy”.
We sympathise. However, the decision to reclaim the handle does make us wonder what ex-Twitter has planned for music. Last week it posted an old promo photo of Ed Sheeran holding a copy of his ‘x’ album, with no further explanation.
If the company wants to do more with music, we’d suggest dealing with the elephant in the room would be a good first step.
In June, US music publishing body the NMPA sued Twitter on behalf of 17 of its members, seeking more than $250m in damages for copyright infringement. Publishers and labels alike have been criticising Twitter for its lack of licensing deals since long before Musk acquired the company.
Perhaps seizing the @music handle is a hint that X, as it’s now known, wants to be a partner for the music industry for licensing, not just promotion. Let’s hope so.