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X Might Have Deleted a Decade Worth of Photos, Videos From Users' Accounts One Twitter user noticed an apparent bug in a post that has since gone viral.

By Emily Rella

The latest road bump with Elon Musk's X may have potentially wiped out some of the internet's most viral and famous photos.

Over the weekend, a Twitter user named Tom Coates noticed that when searching his X history, all of his posts and media from prior to 2014 appeared to be deleted from the social media platform, calling the discovery "vandalism."

A Brazilian YouTuber named Danilo Takagi also noticed the apparent removal of media and in a roughly translated post, asked "Artists and content creators, do you really still want to continue using this network?"

Related: Bright X Sign at Twitter HQ Reportedly Went Up Without Permits

Upon searching through tweets in his archive prior to 2014, Coates noticed that all images and video files were replaced with dead links.

It's important to note that X (which was still Twitter at the time) didn't have the infrastructure for users to natively post photo and video assets alongside text until 2011, five years after it was launched. Coates accused Musk of deleting data as part of a "cost-saving exercise" though it's unclear exactly what caused the issue.

Since Musk and X must pay for storage space to host data and media files on the platform, purging the site of media prior to 2014 would hypothetically free up space and money.

Some users on the platform speculated that the issue lies in the fact that certain t.co links (the original short link format for photos and videos on posts) are broken due to some error or glitch, as demonstrated in a community note attached to Coates' post.

Related: Twitter Is Now 'X,' Rebranding as an 'Everything App'

Oddly enough however, certain images began to restore themselves late into the weekend, including Ellen DeGeneres' infamous Academy Awards selfie that was flooded with A-List celebrities like Brad Pitt and Meryl Streep, a photo taken in October 2014.

At the time of Coates' post, the image was not loading correctly on the platform, meaning that it could have been manually restored on the back end.

The community note also pointed out that image files are still living on the X servers, but the links are what appear to be broken.

"The images are still effectively deleted from the public internet," Coates wrote. "The breaking of the link shortener could just as easily be a conscious decision (eg. to limit bandwidth costs from spiders and web crawlers) as a bug."

Neither Musk nor X's CEO, Linda Yaccarino, have publicly commented on the issue or declared it a bug.

X did not immediately respond to Entrepreneur's request for comment.

Emily Rella

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior News Writer

Emily Rella is a Senior News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was an editor at Verizon Media. Her coverage spans features, business, lifestyle, tech, entertainment, and lifestyle. She is a 2015 graduate of Boston College and a Ridgefield, CT native. Find her on Twitter at @EmilyKRella.

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