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NPR quits Twitter after disputing its "government-funded media" label

Elon Musk next to the Twitter logo

National Public Radio (NPR) has decided to no longer use any of its 52 official Twitter accounts. The decision comes after Twitter CEO Elon Musk labeled NPR first as ""state-affiliated media" and later as "government-funded media" a few days ago.

In a post on NPR's website, the media outlet offers its view of the "government-funded media" branding:

The news organization says that is inaccurate and misleading, given that NPR is a private, nonprofit company with editorial independence. It receives less than 1 percent of its $300 million annual budget from the federally funded Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

NPR says that even if the label is removed from its Twitter page, it may not immediately post new content to the account as it feels that it can no longer trust Twitter's decisions. The media outlet will give its staff members who run those accounts two weeks to "revise their social-media strategies". Individual NPR employees will be allowed to decide whether or not they can continue to update their personal accounts.

This news comes just a few hours after Musk was interviewed by the BBC. The media group's Twitter account was also labeled as "government funded media" a few days ago, even though the BBC gets its funding from UK residents who pay a license fee. Musk stated in the interview that the BBC Twitter page has now been relabeled as "publicly funded".

Musk was also asked in the BBC interview about Twitter's current status since he bought the social network in late 2022, and then fired the majority of its workers. Musk claims that the company is now "roughly breaking even" and that Twitter now has about 1,500 employees, well below the nearly 8,000 workers that it had before Musk purchased the company.

Musk admitted that since acquiring Twitter it has been "really quite a stressful situation over the last several months", but feels that it was still the right decision.

In related news, Musk posted on his own Twitter page that the checkmarks for verified accounts will be removed by April 20. Twitter started putting in the new verified and paid for, Twitter Blue checkmarks on April 1, but left the old ones live, That apparently will change in the next week.

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