Elon Musk doesn't have much to say to the advertisers that have left X following his support for an antisemitic theory.
In a candid interview at the New York Times Dealbook Summit, Musk's first commercial interview since the advertising scandal, the billionaire didn't hold back to let X's former advertisers know what was on his mind.
"I don't want them to advertise. If someone is going to blackmail me with advertising or money, go f**k yourself. Go. F**k. Yourself. Is that clear? I hope it is," he told before a wide audience.
He reiterated this sentiment, specifically mentioning Disney CEO Bob Iger, who had also spoken earlier at the summit.
Several prominent brands, including Disney, Ubisoft, Paramount, NBC Universal, 11:11, Lionsgate and Warner Bros. Discovery paused their advertising on X following Musk's public embrace of an antisemitic conspiracy theory favored by White supremacists.
Despite his strong stance, Musk also issued an apology for agreeing with the conspiracy theory, in what he termed his "dumbest" social media post ever.
"I handed a loaded gun to those who hate me and to those who are antisemitic and for that I am quite sorry," Musk explained.
Musk also admitted to having no issue with being disliked, saying, "Hate away."
He acknowledged the challenges of wanting to be liked and described the past year as "a hell of a year," conceding that he sometimes says "the wrong thing."
Musk Blames Advertisers for X’s Downfall
The event's host Andrew Sorkin clarified with Musk his approach to "the reality" of the situation.
In response, Musk remained keen on his stance and shared that the advertising boycott would "kill the company" and is to blame for its potential downfall, with the "whole world" as the witness.
The billionaire further expounded on his belief that if comes the time X could no longer sustain itself, the public would side with X instead of Disney, and call for a boycott of the entertainment giant.
Earlier this week, a New York Times report claimed that the social media platform could lose as much as $75 million in advertising revenue amid the mass pullout of brands, with the number of companies estimated to be around 200.
However, Linda Yaccarino remained stalwart amid the drawbacks, reiterating the topics covered during Musk's interview, and shared her belief that X "is standing at a unique and amazing intersection of Free Speech and Main Street."