BOSTON 24 NEWS Elon Musk has finalized his $44 billion deal to buy Twitter, which puts him in charge of the most influential social media platfo
BOSTON 24 NEWS
Elon Musk has finalized his $44 billion deal to buy Twitter, which puts him in charge of the most influential social media platforms.
After Musk agreed to buy the company in April, he spent months trying to get out of it with the concern of the amount of bots on the app and accusations released by an anonymous informant from the company itself.
Twitter has refused to comment on the firing of former CEO Parag Agrawal and two other executives.
With the termination of CFO Ned Segal and Policy Head Vijaya Gadde, Musk’s qualification is being questioned. Concerns are being raised about the future of Twitter and the other aspects of life that are heavily affected by it.
According to Musk himself, he plans to rethink Twitter’s censorship and maximize the app’s “free speech”. He has been very vocal about his disagreement with the platform’s use of permanent bans, even when it comes to those with repeated violations of the rules. With his new ownership of the company, this creates the possibility of controversial and formerly banned users to be allowed back onto the app.
Musk even said he would let former president Donald Trump back onto the platform so all eyes are on him to see how soon he will make it happen. This decision could create major implications on the 2024 election and presidential campaign depending on when it is made.
Doing this, Musk could easily create more online discourse and majorly affect the policies on other social media platforms about bans and restrictions.
During a visit to Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters, Musk claims he doesn’t want Twitter to be “free-for-all-hellscape where anything can be said with no consequences.”.
With this purchase, Musk’s influence increases. Considering his ownership and large stakes in many technological advancement companies, Musk’s impact on the world is already quite large. Now with the control of the most influential social media app where millions communicate and get their news, his influence will become even greater.
Musk’s frequently changing attitude about the purchase of Twitter caused quite a stir.
Musk, a frequent and problematic Twitter user, started making waves earlier this year when he built up a more than 9% stake in its shares. In this, he became Twitter’s largest shareholder. He was offered a seat to sit on the board of the company which he accepted at first, then declined.
Musk then offered to buy Twitter completely at a significant surcharge, threatened an aggressive buyout and signed a “seller-friendly” deal to buy the company that included waiving due diligence.
During an interview, Musk states that “this is not a way to make money.” This was shortly after his offer to buy the company. He claims that the fact that he would own such an inclusive app would be “extremely important to the future of civilization.”
Musk also swore to “defeat the spam bots ” which are the fake and scam accounts that are very active when replying to him or other influential people on the app.
Within weeks of the agreement, however, Musk became concerned about the amount of those fake and spam accounts on Twitter and ultimately tried to stop the deal.
As Musk tried to flee from the agreement, Twitter sued him, claiming that he was using the bots as an excuse to get out of the deal or from which he had developed buyer’s remorse. The stock market declined due to the deal and worries of inflation and impending recession.
Twitter was in favor of winning this case in court. Two weeks before they were supposed to go to trial, Musk changed his mind, agreeing to the terms after all.
Twitter’s lawyers wrote that Musk had been trying to escape the deal and “now, on the eve of trial, Defendants declare they intend to close after all. ‘Trust us,’ they said, ‘we mean it this time.’”
Delaware Chancery Court chancellor Kathaleen St. Judge McCormick gave both sides until 5pm on Oct. 28 to close the deal or face a rescheduled trial.
With the deal drama out of the way, attention now turns to Musk’s intentions for Twitter.
Past the removal of Twitter’s CEO and other executives, Musk’s takeover could also increase founder Jack Dorsey’s influence in the company. DOrsey has recently stepped down as CEO and firmly states that he will not officially be returning to Twitter. But he has said that he has spoken to Musk privately about the deal and has even given him advice.
All signs point to Musk staying true to his word of getting rid of nearly 75% of the company’s employees. This was something that he had spoken about previously in private text messages with friends that were revealed in court.
With Musk at the head, Twitter may have no use for the most of the staff it has currently. This is due to his goal of “free speech” and getting rid of basically all of Twitter’s content moderation which is something they worked so hard on for years.
This broadening of free speech could affect other social media apps as well. Twitter, although not necessarily as big as other platforms, has been a guide when dealing with controversial and problematic content or users. Including the banning of former President Trump following the January 6 Capitol riot.
There have been many social networks made to welcome conservatives who have claimed that their speech has been restricted on other social media apps. These networks include Trump’s Truth Social and Parler, which Kanye West is eagerly trying to obtain. While it’s not clear how far Musk will go on his quest for free speech, the reduction of existing content moderation policies could cause many of those users on smaller social networks to come back to Twitter.
Apart from censorship, Musk has also got rid of a wide range of other possible changes for the platform, from enabling end-to-end encryption for Twitter’s direct messaging feature to proposing recently that Twitter become part of an “everything” app called X, mimicking the style of the popular Chinese app WeChat.
Musk has shown a lot of optimism for Twitter’s future. He claims that in the long run, Twitter “is an order of magnitude greater than its current value.”