Elon Musk Didn’t See This Coming

Posted July 10, 2023

The match of the century is underway.

It’s Elon Musk vs. Mark Zuckerberg.

Recently, the two have publicly stated that they would fight each other in a real-life cage match.

I doubt that would ever happen, but Zuckerberg just sucker-punched Musk’s career.

He used a cunning tactic that would get the nod from Lao Tzu.

Zuckerberg distracted Musk on Twitter.

And then out of nowhere...

In a move that no one saw coming...

He released the most direct rival to Twitter, called Threads.

What’s crazy is it’s already become the most rapidly downloaded app of all time, reaching 30 million downloads in 16 hours, according to The New York Times.

Elon Musk definitely did not see this coming.

Frankly, no one did.

It’s amazing how the team over at Meta kept it a secret for so long.

But what did Musk think would happen when Zuck scalped a bunch of ex-Twitter employees?

For those of us who don’t want Zuckerberg and his cronies spying on our every move through Instagram, it won’t affect us.

Even Vice News reported that “Threads is all the worst parts of Twitter and Instagram in one very bad app.”

But for the millions using Twitter and getting FOMO, it’s kind of a big deal.

It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out, as the lawsuits are already piling up — especially because it looks almost exactly like Twitter.

But there’s a bigger problem underlying this battle that these two can’t see through their billions of dollars.

It’s that the government is cracking down on social media, specifically its use by children.

And those millions of children who used to bring in money for these companies might be barred from using social media altogether.

Profits hang in the balance...

Social Media Crackdown

For many of us, it feels like the day of retribution is here...

That’s because the Surgeon General has finally acknowledged what we’ve been blabbering about for years...

That social media is dangerous to your mental and physical health.

An old colleague of mine used to say that social media should come with a Surgeon General's warning. Well, today his wish may come true.

Last Tuesday, the Surgeon General released a shocking new report on the dangers of social media use.

The advisory, titled “Social Media and Youth Mental Health,” brings this issue to life with troubling statistics. If you’re not familiar, this type of advisory is “a public statement that calls the American people’s attention to an urgent public health issue and provides recommendations for how it should be addressed. Advisories are reserved for significant public health challenges that require the nation’s immediate awareness and action.”

So this is a big deal.

The report states that nearly every teenager (95%) in America uses social media, but we don’t know whether it’s safe for them to use it. Whereas with everything else in the U.S., we have a strict system and regulatory agencies to make things “safer.” Think taking medication, driving a car, buying food at a store, or even drinking water.

Yet we don’t have a system to test the strength of this new drug — which is essentially what social media is. For far too long, we’ve been manipulated by the social media companies that are peddling this drug to the youth and adults alike and making billions in the process. And now no one knows how to get off the stuff.

Just look at this damning evidence from the Surgeon General's advisory:

According to one recent model, nearly a third (31%) of social media use may be attributable to self-control challenges magnified by habit formation. Further, some researchers believe that social media exposure can overstimulate the reward center in the brain and, when the stimulation becomes excessive, can trigger pathways comparable to addiction.

Small studies have shown that people with frequent and problematic social media use can experience changes in brain structure similar to changes seen in individuals with substance use or gambling addictions.

A systematic review of 42 studies on the effects of excessive social media use found a consistent relationship between social media use and poor sleep quality, reduced sleep duration, sleep difficulties, and depression among youth.

These apps are created by some of the smartest people in the world whose job it is to keep you online for as long as possible. Of course it’s addictive!

This is serious stuff.

There are a few solutions to this problem being floated.

One is an outright ban, like what happened to TikTok in some states, but many see this as a limit to free speech.

Another is age-restricting the internet by using a driver’s license for access. Maybe a parent can grant their kid access for a certain amount of time if they’re not old enough. The American Psychological Association recommends that parents closely monitor their kids' usage and that tech companies get rid of endless scrolling and the “like” button.

Yet another solution is to rethink how we use the internet, and this is where AI will help.

Rethink the Internet

One day we’ll look back at this moment as a turning point in history, when the world woke up and realized that social media is very harmful to society.

We need to reconceptualize what the internet looks like.

Right now the internet is almost unusable.

You’re hit with targeted ads left and right, paywalls, junk emails...

But what if a company created a simpler way to use the internet?

One where you don’t need a keyboard, mouse, or any screens?

That’s where chatbots come in.

I’ve said this before, but in the very near future, everyone will have their own personal AI assistant.

Heck, computers as we know them might become a thing of the past.

So while Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg duke it out over the umpteenth iteration of a dying platform, let’s look to the future.

You’ve heard all about ChatGPT, so I won’t bore you with that.

Just think about the next iteration of conversational chatbots...

This AI tech will be adopted by 94% of corporations, 9 in 10 vehicles, and 80% of hospitals.

It’s going to be everywhere.

And investors are going to wish they hopped on board sooner — the numbers speak for themselves.

No industry will escape disruption.

That's why we're all-in on AI, specifically one small conversational chatbot company with a potential 5,300% upside...

Don’t be left behind.

Stay frosty,

Alexander Boulden
Editor, Outsider Club

After Alexander’s passion for economics and investing drew him to one of the largest financial publishers in the world, where he rubbed elbows with former Chicago Board Options Exchange floor traders, Wall Street hedge fund managers, and International Monetary Fund analysts, he decided to take up the pen and guide others through this new age of investing. Check out his editor's page here.

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