NASA administrators and others are concerned that Elon Musk’s Twitter CEO role is distracting him from his SpaceX and other obligations.
- SpaceX CEO Elon Musk purchased Twitter on October 28 and he has spent the last month primarily focused on bringing his new vision of the social media app to life.
- That prioritizing is concerning NASA, which is heavily reliant on SpaceX for delivering supplies to the International Space Station and providing components for the 2025 Artemis III moon landing mission, The Wall Street Journal reports.
- NASA administrator Bill Nelson spoke with SpaceX executives on Sunday to discuss the concern of delays—and SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell assured that Twitter would not be a distraction for finishing vital projects.
Why it’s News
Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter has earned a negative reputation for his erratic decision-making and chaotic choices, firing large swaths of employees, publicly criticizing former staff, and leading several prominent celebrities to leave the website in protest.
“Mr. Musk’s activities outside of SpaceX also have drawn the attention of some company employees this year. A group of SpaceX employees in June sent a letter to executives at SpaceX criticizing his statements on Twitter and behavior, and requesting management separate the company from Mr. Musk’s personal brand,” says The Wall Street Journal.
Musk plans to move away from the CEO position in the future and plant someone new to run the company in his place.
Backing up a Bit
Musk already owns or operates multiple companies including SpaceX, Neurolink, The Boring Company, and Tesla, the latter of which has decreased 46.1% in valuation in the past year. Five companies are alot to stretch his attention between and the output of some of them has suffered even as major announcements and accomplishments have been reported this year.
SpaceX is contracted to provide lunar landers and a Starship vehicle to assist in NASA’s Artemis III and Artemis IV missions. While reports from October suggested Starship was finally ready for an orbital test as early as this month, the vehicle hasn’t launched yet and may not be before early 2023.