Elon Musk buys Twitter for $44bn and plans to 'defeat spam bots' and 'authenticate all humans'
After weeks of speculation, Musk finally has his offer accepted by the Twitter board and takes the social media giant into private hands. His offer of $54.20 a share will transfer ownership to the world’s wealthiest man. With his $273bn wealth, Musk is indeed already a wealthy man, with his shareholding in Tesla and SpaceX, taking him to the top of the global wealth list.
In a statement announcing the deal, Must said "Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated." He also revealed he planned to 'enhance the product with new features' and 'make the algorithms open source to increase trust'.
Musk is no stranger to Twitter. With a following of over 83 million on Twitter, he has used the platform quite prolifically and he understands all too well the power of a tweet, when in 2021, stating that Tesla would no longer accept Bitcoin as a currency of exchange, sent the value of Bitcoin down 15%.
It's a very powerful medium, with 500 million tweets per day being exchanged, which Donald Trump found out to his cost, by being 'permanently suspended' from the social media platform due to the risk of further incitement to violence in January 2021, for breaching ~twitter's rules, leading to him setting up his own social media platform, Truth Social, which has failed to take off. Will Musk's takeover of Twitter allow Trump to be re-instated?
"I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans," he added.
"Twitter has tremendous potential - I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it." Elon Musk wants to protect 'free speech' - but by putting the world's largest social media giant in the hands of the world's wealthiest man, can that be good or bad for free speech? The Twitter board voted unanimously to accept the deal, so they must see the benefits of Musk taking over the helm, although he declined an earlier invitation to join the board. The Twitter board see the value of this deal as a focus on value, certainty and financing.