Eight years ago, Donald Trump announced his first-ever presidential campaign by descending a golden escalator. It was a tacky, ridiculous way to announce one’s gunning for the most powerful job in the world. But it sure was better than what gaffe-prone Ron DeSantis did, which was team up with Elon Musk for an announcement that was inevitably plagued with glitches and headaches.
DeSantis’ much-hyped, outside-the-box announcement was scheduled to kick off at 6pm EST on Twitter Spaces. Perhaps in the Jack Dorsey era, such an ambitious volley would have gone off with flying colors. Not so in the Musk era, when a large chunk of the service’s staff was unceremoniously canned.
The Guardian tracked the disaster in real time. First off, it was audio-only, perhaps so as to hide any weird faces the Florida governor might have made. But the audio had bad feedback. What’s more, many reported that the event was causing their apps to crash.
“We got so many people here that we are kind of melting the servers, which is a good sign,” said Republican donor and Musk pal David Sacks.
DeSantis was noticeably quiet. Even 20 minutes in, he had yet to say a word. Then, 21 minutes in, the Space appeared to crash. The event had to move to another room, where glitches seemed to abate and DeSantis finally spoke about COVID restrictions and declared there’s “no substitute for victory.”
But people really couldn’t get over what a crapshow the whole thing was.
Twitter spaces somehow crashed my whole phone? Can’t get off the lock screen.
— Ben Collins (@oneunderscore__) May 24, 2023
Twitter app just crashed trying to listen into DeSantis. Desantis has to rejoin? Then an awful echoing starts?
— Ben Goggin (@BenjaminGoggin) May 24, 2023
Ron DeSantis' Twitter Spaces campaign launch has, so far, featured:
-Several minutes of silence
-Random throat clearing
-Muffled commentary from Elon Musk about why Spaces isn't working
-Hosts, including DeSantis disappearing
Great start to his campaign! pic.twitter.com/Zppxlk5HkN
— jordan (@JordanUhl) May 24, 2023
Many people noticed all the crashing and glitches.
elon musk is so profoundly incompetent, the stream for a 400k audio only space keeps crashing, and we just heard elon mumble "the servers keep crashing huh"
— hasanabi (@hasanthehun) May 24, 2023
Wow. The Twitter Spaces launch for Ron DeSantis with Elon Musk is an absolute disaster.
The Spaces function kept glitching out. When they finally were able to get the functionality to work, there was massive echo and feedback before the entire session went silent again.
— MeidasTouch (@MeidasTouch) May 24, 2023
“Just keeps crashing, huh?”
— Elon Musk’s planned Twitter Space with Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) for his 2024 presidential launch has gone extremely awry pic.twitter.com/fTKu6PTyOy
— The Recount (@therecount) May 24, 2023
The Musk / DeSantis Twitter Space keeps crashing.
It closed out my entire app twice.
Speakers keep cutting out and dropping.
There was only around 250k listeners when this happened.
— Matt Binder (@MattBinder) May 24, 2023
The Ron DeSantis Elon Musk campaign was a complete disaster and just crashed the space 3 times pic.twitter.com/rxGOys51Sw
— The Serfs (@theserfstv) May 24, 2023
Fewer than 500,000 people are trying to listen to this Ron DeSantis campaign launch on Twitter spaces and it is crashing everyone’s phones. Imagine what would happen if a large amount of people actually showed up.
— Ben Collins (@oneunderscore__) May 24, 2023
For some, the Spaces event just plain wasn’t working.
Anyone else getting this when they try to tune in to the Elon Musk conversation with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis? pic.twitter.com/R2b6kPK4Mv
— John Dickerson (@jdickerson) May 24, 2023
People got kicked out.
It appears that the Ron DeSantis / Elon Musk Twitter Space is glitching like crazy because of the demand. There were over 450,000 people at once in the space within 10 minutes of it opening.
Users were being kicked out frequently including DeSantis himself as well as David… pic.twitter.com/9oxgSrag9U
— Brian Krassenstein (@krassenstein) May 24, 2023
Others complained that this presidential campaign announcement was oddly audio-only.
Does anyone know why DeSantis's launch appearance will be audio-only?
— Michael Beschloss (@BeschlossDC) May 24, 2023
He’s talking to the richest guy on the planet on a platform where nobody can see him.
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) May 24, 2023
Little about it inspired confidence in either the guy trailing behind Donald Trump in the polls nor the guy who runs three major tech companies.
The guys who can’t run a conference call should definitely run the country
— Olivia Nuzzi (@Olivianuzzi) May 24, 2023
There were jokes.
Ron DeSantis learning what happens when you launch things with Elon Musk pic.twitter.com/7RChrLEXtY
— Oliver Willis (@owillis) May 24, 2023
How it started/going etc pic.twitter.com/H34juEKq2c
— Keith Olbermann↙️ (@KeithOlbermann) May 24, 2023
Live shot of that Twitter engineer who got insulted by Musk over his body odor six months ago pic.twitter.com/JpAgBY4Usn
— Bill Grueskin (@BGrueskin) May 24, 2023
I’m Ron Dee-Saster and I’ll just show myself out. pic.twitter.com/MIZxkeVxuW
— Lesley Abravanel (@lesleyabravanel) May 24, 2023
Eventually DeSantis got trolled by an 80-year-old man.
Perhaps this whole disaster should give Tucker Carlson an idea of what he’s in for.