Skip to main content
Business

‘Proof Elon an idiot’: Man Trolls Musk With Projected Messages on Twitter HQ, and He Wants Your Help

Written by Joe BurnPublished Nov. 09, 2022 • 8:07pm
Messages projected onto Twitter HQ in San Francisco by projectionist activist Alan Marling. Marling has been projecting messages onto Bay Area buildings since 2017. He began doing it with Twitter in 2017 in protest of Donald Trump’s presence on the platform. | Courtesy Alan Marling

English

A Bay Area man is battling online hate speech while simultaneously trolling Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk, by projecting messages on an exterior wall of the firm’s SF headquarters. 

A self-described projection activist, Alan Marling first beamed messages on the firm’s Market Street tower in 2017, when Donald Trump and “the company amplified lies and hate speech,” Marling said.

Trump was later banned from the platform after refusing to accept the results of the 2020 election and “due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” Twitter said. 

Marling has been outside the company’s offices again in the wake of Musk’s takeover. As recently as Monday night, he projected the message, “Free hate speech,” on the wall with an arrow pointing to Twitter’s sign.

‘Proof Elon an idiot’

Alan Marling (pictured) has been projecting messages onto Bay Area buildings since 2017. | Courtesy Alan Marling

Other messages Marling has blazoned across the office include, “proof Elon an idiot,” “Megaphone of Hate,” “free monetized speech,” “Elon Musk: Mediocre manboy,” and “#StopToxicTwitter.”

Marling is also crowdsourcing your suggestions on what to display on the building next via Reddit.

Musk’s new reign at the company has already seen huge staff cuts, with changes to moderation and verification methods stoking security fears and concerns about an increase of disinformation—fears Marling shares. 

“I used to enjoy Twitter as a way to connect with friends and build community over great distances,” Marling said. “Now I avoid the site.”

Messages projected onto Twitter HQ in San Francisco by projectionist activist Alan Marling. | Courtesy Alan Marling

Marling said that if hate speech and white supremacist conspiracy theories are allowed on Twitter, it could drive out people of color, minorities and women. 

“Given Elon Musk’s sacking of Twitter moderators, it would appear he wants the social media site to become a megaphone of hate, hostile to anyone who isn’t an overprivileged white man,” Marling added, who said he’s been met with “congratulations online and thumbs-up in the street” for his projections.

See Also

Former employees of the firm’s human rights, accessibility experience, communications and curation departments have shared that they were either let go or their departments were dissolved.

Marling believes that social media companies wish to be seen as public forums and cultivators of free speech, but says they are in fact private companies, without moral compasses, each trying to turn a profit.

Activists are now encouraging advertisers to pull away from the platform. Musk said in a tweet he is suing activists for this.

Twitter has been contacted for comment.

English

Joe Burn can be reached at [email protected]


FTX Contagion: BlockFi Bankruptcy Wipes Out Billions for 400,000 Everyday Americans and Investors Like Peter Thiel

FTX Contagion: BlockFi Bankruptcy Wipes Out Billions for 400,000 Everyday Americans and Investors Like Peter Thiel


World Cup Breathes Much Needed Life Into Struggling San Francisco Venues

World Cup Breathes Much Needed Life Into Struggling San Francisco Venues


University of California Workers Reach Tentative Deals as Strike Enters Third Week

University of California Workers Reach Tentative Deals as Strike Enters Third Week


They Bought Steph Curry’s NFTs On FTX. Now Those NFTs Are Gone

They Bought Steph Curry’s NFTs On FTX. Now Those NFTs Are Gone


Watch: The Extraordinary Saga of Sam Bankman-Fried and the Collapse of FTX

Watch: The Extraordinary Saga of Sam Bankman-Fried and the Collapse of FTX


Stay on top of what’s happening in your city

SF’s most important stories, delivered straight to your inbox



By clicking Subscribe you confirm you have read and agree to our Terms of Use and acknowledge our Privacy Policy