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'Cancel Disney Plus,' 'Cancel Hulu' Become Trending Topics After Elon Musk Battle With Media Company: Should Disney Be Worried?

Published Dec 01, 2023 21:56 Updated Dec 01, 2023 23:10
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© Reuters. 'Cancel Disney Plus,' 'Cancel Hulu' Become Trending Topics After Elon Musk Battle With Media Company: Should Disney Be Worried?
 
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Benzinga - by Chris Katje, Benzinga Staff Writer.

A decision to pull advertising from social media platform Twitter, now known as X, could have a backfiring effect on media company The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), who is one of many companies pausing ads on the platform.

What Happened: Disney announced that it would suspend advertising on Twitter, due to Twitter owner Elon Musk‘s interaction with an antisemitic post. Speaking at the recent Dealbook Summit, Disney CEO Bob Iger stood behind the decision.

"I have a lot of respect for Elon and what he has accomplished," Iger said. "We know that Elon is larger than life in many respects, and that his name is very much connected to the companies he founded or owns."

Iger said it was "perfectly reasonable" for CEOs to share their thoughts and opinions, but it can sometimes be a negative.

"By him taking the position he took in a public manner, we felt that the association was not necessarily a positive one for us."

Iger said he doesn't know how long the advertising ban on Twitter will last.

Speaking at the same Dealbook event hours later, Musk apologized for interacting with the antisemitic post, but also called out companies that are pulling advertising on Twitter, accusing them of blackmailing him.

"I don't want them to advertise," Musk said. "If someone is going to blackmail me with advertising or money, go f*** yourself. Go. F***. Yourself. Is that clear?"

Musk added "Hey Bob, if you're in the audience" after his comments, in a likely jab at Iger.

Related Link: Bob Iger Gets Real At Disney Town Hall: ‘No One Wants To Follow A Pessimist’

Why It's Important: While companies are free to pull advertisements from Twitter, consumers are also free to cancel their streaming subscriptions with media companies like Disney, as the company could be finding out.

On Thursday, terms like cancelling, cancel Disney Plus and Cancel Hulu trended on Twitter. Cancel Disney Plus and Cancel Hulu also saw increased interest on Google Trends. The trends came as several fans of Musk shared that users should stop supporting Disney after their battle with Musk.

"Stop giving money to people that hate you. Cancel Disney+ and pass it on," Twitter user EndWokeness tweeted with pictures of instructions on how to cancel the streaming plans. The post has nearly one million views on Twitter.

The Kobeissi Letter shared on Twitter that search interest for the cancel Disney+ and Hulu terms were up 120% following Musk's comments. A poll conducted by the financial outlet said that 68.5% of 90,000 respondents said they would be cancelling their Disney streaming subscriptions.

While the impact of Disney's boycott of Twitter advertising could backfire and lead to cancellations, it also comes at a time when the new content on the platform might be thin. Tech blog Tom's Guide wrote in a post that the December lineup is "eerily bare."

The month of December will not feature any significant new releases from Marvel or Star Wars on Disney+. The highlights for the month are a Doctor Who Holiday Special and Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The article also said that, compared to other platforms, Disney+ offers less holiday-themed content during December, a month when interest in such programming typically increases.

Disney ended the fourth quarter with 112.6 million core Disney+ subscribers, adding seven million subscribers in the fourth quarter.

With a smaller lineup of new releases and calls for a boycott of the service, the first quarter results for Disney+ streaming figures could be something for investors to consider monitoring.

DIS Price Action: Disney shares closed 0.12% lower on Friday at $92.58, versus a 52-week trading range of $78.73 to $118.18.

Read Next: Bob Iger On ESPN, Streaming, Hollywood Strike: Post Q4 Earnings Comments, Highlights From Conference Call

Photo: Shutterstock

© 2023 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

Read the original article on Benzinga

'Cancel Disney Plus,' 'Cancel Hulu' Become Trending Topics After Elon Musk Battle With Media Company: Should Disney Be Worried?
 

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