Elon Musk is rebranding Twitter into ‘X’ a mysterious addition that may seem spontaneous but has been a fascination for years for Twitter’s new owner.
Musk began tweeting about a possible rebrand late on July 24, saying X would be the new name. “Soon we shall bid adieu to the Twitter brand and gradually, all the birds,” his tweet reads. In another, he elaborates, “If a good enough X logo is posted tonight, we’ll make go live worldwide tomorrow.” He spent the next few hours engaging with people on Twitter who were suggesting ‘X’ logo alternatives for his rebrand.
According to a report from The Verge, Musk sent an email to Twitter employees announcing the change. He stated it would be the last time they received an email from the twitter.com domain. Musk has been fascinated with the letter X for decades, with it gracing several of his projects over the years. But the X.com domain has always been his white whale—the one that got away.
X.com was the original name for PayPal before he was ousted by Peter Thiel’s management team who thought a rebrand was a pretty stupid idea for a company that inspired people to use its name as a verb. “PayPal me the cash,” was as common in eBay exchanges as “did you see the latest tweet?”
Elon Musk re-purchased the X.com domain from PayPal in 2017 for an undisclosed sum. It sat unused until recently, where it now re-directs to Twitter.com. Musk has hinted that eventually, the Twitter.com domain will cease to exist and X.com will takeover—erasing the bluebird branding and one of the biggest social media presences on the web for good.
It’s unclear how this will impact promotions using the new site, if the twitter.com domain will continue to redirect or how that will be handled. It seems as though Musk is eager to kill the bird branding for good, as he told a series of Twitter Spaces listeners that he plans to burn the bird off the side of the building with blowtorches.