Technology Twitter loses 3 million monthly UK visitors after Musk...

Twitter loses 3 million monthly UK visitors after Musk takeover

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Twitter has lost almost three million UK visitors to its website since Elon Musk’s troubled takeover, figures reveal.

The social media company, now known as X, racked up a total adult monthly audience of 24 million in May this year, down from 26.8 million at the same time last year, according to media regulator Ofcom.

Separate data from Ipsos iris shows Twitter has been declining in popularity among British users in recent years, with its reach falling from 61pc of adults in 2021 to 50pc this year.

But the trend has accelerated following a controversial $44bn (£35bn) takeover by Mr Musk just over a year ago.

The Tesla founder, a self-styled “free speech absolutist”, has come under fire for his abrupt changes in policy and moves to roll back moderation on the social media platform.

Users have complained of a sharp fall in the quality of the social media site after Mr Musk fired over 80pc of the company’s workforce.

The new owner has also been criticised for his personal views, including an incident earlier this month when he appeared to endorse an anti-Semitic post.

His actions have drawn criticism from the White House and contributed to an advertising boycott that has seen governments and high-profile brands including Apple and Disney pull ads from the website.

While the number of people logging into Twitter has fallen, the Ofcom figures showed the average time spent on the site each day has risen from six minutes to 10 minutes over the last year.

Still, the turmoil at Twitter has prompted many social media users to switch to rival services.

Threads, launched by Instagram in June, became the most rapidly downloaded app in history, with more than 100 million global users signing up in just five days.

By the start of September, less than three months after launch, almost a quarter of UK adults had used Threads, according to the figures.

Ofcom’s annual Online Nation report also showed a drop in the popularity of Facebook and its sister app, Messenger.

Monthly visitor numbers fell by 1.4 million to 43.4 million over the last year, while the average time spent per day slumped by more than a quarter from 32 to 23 minutes.

This enabled Google-owned YouTube to overtake Facebook as the most visited website in the UK, with 43.5 million monthly visitors and a reach of 91pc of the population.

However, the data revealed a sharp contrast in social media use across different demographics.

While people aged 45 and above spent around half an hour per day on Facebook on average, this fell to just 12 minutes among 18 to 24-year-olds.

By contrast, 3.8 million people aged between 18 and 24 in the UK spent an average of 55 minutes on TikTok each day, while roughly the same number spent 58 minutes daily on Snapchat.

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