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Why Elon Musk is Removing Article Headlines from X Posts

Elon Musk (arms crossed) - Getty
Elon Musk – Getty

*Elon Musk confirmed that he has ordered work on removing article headlines from X posts, so that links only display the story’s lead image … all because it makes the timeline look better, reports Insider.

“This is coming from me directly,” Musk wrote on X, addressing an earlier Fortune report that broke the news. “Will greatly improve the esthetics,” he added.

The unnamed source told Fortune: “It’s something Elon wants. They were running it by advertisers, who didn’t like it, but it’s happening.”

Currently, posts with links are displayed as a “card” which shows the headline, lead image, and a brief description of the story. The source told Fortune that Musk wants to lower clickbait and thinks that news articles take up too much space on the timeline. Eliminated headlines would reduce the height of posts with links and the amount of information that can be portrayed. This would force users to rely solely on the picture to figure out what the link is about.

Anyone who wants to post a link will need to manually add their own description, which could reduce how often news articles are shared.

The card format was introduced when tweets were restricted to 140 characters. That limit can now be increased to 25,000 if a poster is subscribed to X Premium.

Musk has yet to announce when the headline removal will take place. Although, according to Insider, the changes appear to have already been implemented on the mobile app. The headline is still visible, but there is no longer a story summary below it. The URL is overlaid on the image, but it only shows the parent link.

A few hours before responding to Fortune’s report, Musk encouraged journalists to publish directly on X, saying there would be “more freedom to write and a higher income.”

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