So another savior for the cesspool that many believe American is today announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for president. But this time, it was done in what was being as a groundbreaking way–on social media, on a relatively unknown feature of Twitter called Twitter Spaces. With fanfare and expectations that belied the fact that ever since he was re-elected as Florida’s governor in a landslide vote 18 months, Ron DeSantis has done far more to stoke culture wars and alter educational curricula than he has actually do anything remotely resembling the actual responsbilties of his job, DeSantis announced his intentions on Twitter Spaces last night, joined by Elon Musk himself as well as David Sacks, described by Daniel Victor of The New York Times as a fitting bridge between them.
Scheduled to begin at 6 PM ET last night, what those curious enough to actually figure out what the heck Twitter Spcaes was instead got the sh-tshow which Peye Syme of BUSINESS INSIDER described in this manner:
The Florida governor kicked off his campaign via Twitter Spaces on Wednesday, but it was marred by glitches and started nearly 30 minutes late.
Three Twitter employees told The Times that internally, staff had been worrying whether the platform could handle the traffic. There was also no plan for any site reliability issues, the NYT reported. “Spaces was largely a prototype, not a finished product,” one ex-Twitter staffer told CNN. “It’s a beta test that never ended.”
They added that Spaces relies on both the company’s own infrastructure and Amazon Web Services, which “aren’t intended to handle Twitter-scale traffic.”
With 600,000 people trying to listen to DeSantis’ announcement, users reported their apps crashing as Twitter struggled to deal with demand. “We’ve got so many people here that we are kind of melting the servers,” cohost David Sacks said.
This was as much an audition for the capacity of Musk’s Twitter to demonstrate the capacity to handle significant simultaneous traffic–you know, the same kinds of issues that Netflix experienced with its recent attempts at live events such as a Chris Rock stand-up show or the reunion show of reality hit LOVE IS BLIND. The same kind of issue that Amazon experienced with some of its Thursday Night Football game. While the capacity of content of streaming media may appear to be limitless, the physical capacity to accommodate the kind of volume that old-school media can is still problematic. One would have thought that Musk, the now-CTO and tech genius, might, just might, have worked all of that out beforehand with other techno-geeks who perhaps speak his language?
Nah. Details. Minutiae. The sort of prevalent attitude that smug younger producers take when they attempt something as ambitious as live-to-tape production. “Aah, we’ll fix it in post”. Well, instead, what this clearly avoidable f**kup did was give a lane for his competition to mercilessly troll and mock almost every single point he attempted to make.
As HUFFPOST’s Ed Mazza reported:
Donald Trump welcomed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to the Republican presidential race with a series of increasingly bizarre posts on his various social media channels.
The former president posted a video attacking DeSantis as an ingrate who owes his career to Trump. He posted another of what appears to be a SpaceX rocket falling over and exploding with “Ron! 2024” over it.
And he shared a weird video mocking DeSantis’ entry via a glitchy Twitter event hosted by Elon Musk.
In Trump’s version, the participants include not just Musk and DeSantis but also Adolf Hitler, the devil, a coughing Dick Cheney, billionaire George Soros, World Economic Forum founder Klaus Schwab and an FBI agent openly plotting to “take out” Trump.
The video concludes with a fake ― perhaps AI ― Trump voice unleashing insults.
“The devil, I’m gonna kick your ass very soon. Hitler, you’re already dead. Dick Cheney, sounds like you’ll be joining Hitler very soon,” the Trump voice says. “Ron DeSanctimonious can kiss my big, beautiful 2024 presidential ass.”
Added Aditi Bharade of THE INSIDER:
Since DeSantis’ announcement, Trump has let loose a relentless salvo of insults directed at his rival. He called the technical glitches on DeSantis’ announcement a “catastrophe.” In the same spirit, his son Donald Trump Junior labeled it a “#DeSaster” on Twitter.
Trump also posted a clip-by-clip comparison of his extravagant announcement at his Mar-a-Lago club in contrast with DeSantis’ glitch-filled announcement on Twitter Spaces.
Trump allies jumped on the DeSantis-bashing bandwagon too, with Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz, once a DeSantis ally, tweeted: “DeSedative.”
Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene established that she was supporting Trump and his “Great American Comeback” in a tweet shortly after DeSantis’ announcement.
Say what you will about Fat Orange Jesus, and clearly I do. When he made his announcement to seek the presidency, he did so in a visual manner, with extensive coverage from a medium called cable TV which the majority of his simpler, geriatric support base can easily access. And in a manner not unlike a teenager at Halloween preparing to TP a neighbor’s house, they were more than ready to fill any opportunity to get their own points across at a time when the more tech-savvy were on their devices, almost as frustrated as Sacks was with what was exposed to be little more than a bad ripoff of Clubhouse. Where’s that stock price these days, by the way?
Musk and Twitter clearly have ambitions to be more steeped and to drive revenue from multimedia, including video. As I speculated at length when he hired NBCU’s Linda Yaccarino to run the company, there are clearly aspirations for events like this to drive adoption and traffic. There is actually precedence for using a big announcement to drive awareness and adoption. Lebron James owned the rights to his announcement that he was “taking his talents to South Beach” and drove a bidding war that ultimately ESPN paid handsomely for, and was rewarded with a massive audience. More recently, the online PAT McAFEE SHOW was the choice of quarterback Aaron Rodgers to announce his intention to play for the Jets this fall, delivering hundreds of thousands of viewers in real time to his site, a rare midday occurance for a sports site.
But at least they could handle the traffic. They probably even had completed beta testing.
There are, at least to me, some decent things about the way DeSantis has handled some things that are appealing. In hindsight, his approach to in-school learning given the actual statistical risk COVID presented to students produced stronger test scores and less disruption to the learning process of Florida kids than in many other states. A friend of mine who held a prominent position in Hillsborough County high school management (where Tampa is located gave me detailed data on how strong their numbers were, and their infection rate no worse than counties downstate that were far more “cautious”. What he has chosen to do in taking on Disney, who is now no less merciless with their responses to his political maneuvering that the Truth Social trolls were yesterday, is abhorrent. And whether he can withstand what will likely be an endless barrage of the kind of maniacal and obsessive response that he got just a few hours into his campaign is questionable.
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the official reaction of the leading candidate for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination:
That unhinged, mature observation was able to get out far quicker and impactfully than DeSantis was able to because a) the site it eminated from has far less traffic and b) it was done with text, not audio.
If Musk really wants to be a multimedia player, he needs to do a better job with the title he now has–CTO–and DeSantis needs to rely upon more vetted and visual ways to do it.
You want inspiration, Rob–er–Ron? You’re in far better shape than your opponent. Remember this?
THAT, by the way, is ready for prime time. Neither you nor Twitter Spaces appear to be just yet.
Until next time…
This is kino pic.twitter.com/JFOOjEIfg9
— mr sixteen to one (@OregonMapGuy) May 25, 2023