Elon Musk’s X names head of safety after nine months of no safety leader

Elon Musk’s X appointed a new head of safety nine months after the former safety leader’s exit, leaving the role vacant as the social platform weathered mounting scrutiny over the spread of hateful speech and misinformation.

The company promoted an internal employee, Kylie McRoberts — a nearly four-year veteran of Twitter who previously held a cybersecurity-related role at Google — to Head of Safety.

“McRoberts has been instrumental in our recent progress towards achieving unparalleled safety and security for our platform. During her time at X, she has led initiatives to increase transparency in our moderation practices,” X touted.

Kylie McRoberts was promoted to X’s Head of Safety on Tuesday. McRoberts is a nearly four-year veteran of Twitter who previously held a cybersecurity-related role at Google.

The company made the announcement in a post to X Tuesday, where it also informed users that it renamed its Trust & Safety division to simply Safety.

Going forward, McRoberts’ global team will be “responsible for developing new products, tools, and features to protect our platform and community, maintaining our safety policies, and enhancing our enforcement methodology and operations.”

McRoberts will be the third executive to fill the safety head position since Musk acquired Twitter for $44 billion in October 2022.

The first, Yoel Roth, resigned just weeks after Musk took the helm, Bloomberg reported, citing the billionaire’s easing standards against misinformation and hate on the platform.

Then in June, Roth’s successor, Ella Irwin, also resigned.

X also said it hired Yale Cohen to join the high-profile team as X’s Head of Brand Safety and Advertiser Solutions.

Yale Cohen was also hired as X’s Head of Brand Safety and Advertiser Solutions after working as an executive for public relations giant Publicis Media. LinkedIn/Yale Cohen

Cohen previously served as the executive vice president of global digital standards at public relations giant Publicis Media.

Now, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School grad “will continue to ensure a safe advertising experience for customers and brands on X.”

“When we say safety and freedom of speech can and must coexist on X — we mean it. And the safety team works tirelessly, day and night, across the globe to make that happen,” CEO Linda Yaccarino added Tuesday in a companywide email obtained by The Post.

The new role appointments come after advertisers fled the platform over an influx of antisemitic content following the outbreak of war between Israel and Hamas that was capped off with Musk’s profanity-laced remarks in November during his New York Times DealBook Summit interview, where he told advertisers to “go f–k yourself.”

Apple, Disney, film company Lionsgate, and IBM were among the heaviest hitters to leave X around this time, swiping millions from the platform’s ad revenue.

Apple alone was reportedly on track to spend $180 million on X last year.

Elon Musk acquired Twitter in October 2022 for $44 billion and has been on a quest to make it the “everything app” — starting with renaming it to X and drastically reducing the company’s headcount. REUTERS

The advertising boycott late last year sunk X’s market cap by a staggering 71% as of 2024, Axios reported.

To make matters worse, Musk faced a fresh wave of backlash about his social media company’s moderation policies when artificial intelligence-generated nude photos of Taylor Swift went viral.

At that point, X said it would hire 100 full-time staffers to crack down on child sexual exploitation — and that it would build a “trust and safety center” in Austin, Texas where it would hire “in-house agents” who would be tasked with enforcing the site’s content and safety rules.

Since acquiring the social media company, Musk has touted his goal of transforming X into the “everything app,” including allowing unfettered speech. His efforts — which included drastically slashing headcount from the company’s trust and safety operations upon his takeover — have been criticized for compromising the platform.

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