Elon Musk told companies that have paused ad buys on X to “go fuck” yourselves, saying an ongoing boycott would likely “kill the company” but the world would judge who was at fault.
“If somebody’s going to try and blackmail me with advertising, blackmail me with money, go fuck yourself,” Musk said during the New York Times’ DealBook Summit on Wednesday. “Go. Fuck. Yourself.”
He then seemed to call out Disney CEO Bob Iger by name after the company was one of many to pause its ad spending.
The company has been reeling from an advertising boycott after Musk endorsed an antisemitic post on X earlier this month amid the war between Israel and Hamas, prompting worldwide outcry. The Times recently reported the social media platform could lose as much as $75 million in revenue by the end of the year.
Musk went on to say the advertising boycott could see X fail, but that it would not be his fault. He declined to answer journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin’s question if he would use his own vast wealth to keep it alive.
“What this advertising boycott is going to do, it’s going to kill the company,” Musk told Sorkin. “And the whole world will know that those advertisers killed the company, and we will document it in great detail.”
“Tell it to the judge,” he added. “The judge is the public.”
Musk repeatedly defended his efforts to walk-back the remark, saying he was not antisemitic while calling his post endorsing the tweet “one of the most foolish” things he’s ever put online. He had previously attacked what he called “bogus media stories,” saying he only wished “the best for humanity and a prosperous and exciting future for all.”
“Of all the posts I’ve done on the platform — I think there might be 30,000 — once in a while I will say something foolish, and I have,” he said Wednesday. “And I would certainly put that comment [as] one of the most foolish if not the most foolish on the platform. I did do my best to clarify afterwards, I certainly did not mean anything antisemitic in that.”
“I am quite sorry,” he said earlier in the event. “I should in retrospect not have replied to that particular post.”
He went on to try and explain his endorsement and his attacks on groups like the Anti-Defamation League, adding: “What I was saying was that it’s unwise to support groups that want your annihilation,” Musk said.
He also noted his recent trip to Israel ― which, according to Musk, “wasn’t some apology tour.”
His comments came a day before Tesla’s launch of its first major new product in years: The Cybertruck.