Elon Musk takes control of @X account from user who had held it since 2007

Elon Musk has taken over the @x Twitter account as part of the social network’s ongoing rebrand after the after the previous owner of the account moved to a new one.

Gene X Hwang, a photographer in San Francisco, was behind the social network’s “@x” handle until Tuesday night when it was changed to the official account for X, Musk’s new name for Twitter.

The single-letter username was registered to Gene X. Hwang, a San Francisco based photographer, was behind the social network’s “@x” handle for more than 16 years until Tuesday night when it was changed to the official account for X, Musk’s new name for Twitter.

Hwang had said he had been willing to entertain a sale of the @x account, which was registered in 2007, but that he simply received an email on Tuesday saying that it was being taken over by the company, the Telegraph reported quoting Hwang as saying.

“Alls well that ends well,” Hwang posted from a new account, @x12345678998765.

The reports say the X owner has taken over some other accounts without permission since he took over the platform in October 2022.

The world’s richest person took over the username @e shortly after acquiring the company for $44 billion, despite the original owner of the account being unwilling to part with it, reported Platformer editor Zoe Schiffer.

The report further say @e account remains inactive, featuring the name ‘John Utah’ – the same as the protagonist of the 1991 film Point Break. The account follows just three accounts: Elon Musk, LAist and Nasa.

The social media platform X has also renamed its subscription service to @XBlue, and @TwitterSupport to @Support to ditch the Twitter branding.

The company also removed Twitter signage from its San Francisco headquarters on Monday and the website domain X.com is now redirected to Twitter.com, and also the platform’s blue bird logos have been replaced with a crowd-sourced X logo.

According to some eminent trademark lawyers, the hasty switch from one brand to another may result in legal difficulties for Musk as the billionaire does not own the intellectual property rights for the letter X when it relates to social networking. Meta’s Mark Zuckerberg currently controlling the federal trademark for a blue-and-white letter ‘X’ for “social networking services”.

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Updated: 26 Jul 2023, 06:26 PM IST


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