Elon Musk officially took control of Twitter. What’s next? – Nation

Elon Musk controlled Twitter after a lengthy legal battle and months of uncertainty. The question now is what the billionaire CEO of Tesla will actually do with the social media platform.

Musk gave an indication of his position in a tweet Friday, saying that no decision on content or account recovery will be made until the “content moderation board” is approved. given. The council will have different views, he wrote.

Many are expecting major staffing changes, with Musk firing some of Twitter’s top executives on Thursday. The fourth confirmed his departure, in a tweet.

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Elon Musk officially takes over Twitter after closing a $44 billion deal: report

But Musk, the tech pundit and self-proclaimed “Chief Twit,” has offered conflicting statements about his vision for the company _ and shared some concrete plans for how he will run it. after buying it for $44 billion.

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That left Twitter users, advertisers, and employees to analyze his every move in an attempt to guess where he could take the company. Many were looking to see if he would welcome back some influential conservatives banned for violating Twitter’s rules – speculation only heightened after the upcoming elections in Brazil, America and elsewhere.

“I’m going to dig deeper today,” he tweeted early Friday, in response to a conservative political podcaster who complained that the platform favors libertarians and secretive downgrades. protect conservative voices.

Former President Donald Trump, a fan of tweeting before he was banned, said on Friday he was “glad that Twitter is now in sane hands” but has promoted his own social networking site, Truth Social , which he launched after being blocked from wider use. communication.

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Trump was banned two days after the January 6 attack for a pair of tweets that the company said continued to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the presidential election and pose a risk to the presidential inauguration. which Trump said he would not attend.

Trump has repeatedly said he won’t return to Twitter even if his account is reinstated, though some allies wonder if he can resist as he gets closer to announcing a campaign. President expected otherwise or not. His Twitter account remained suspended as of Friday.

Meanwhile, conservatives on the site began circulating long-debunked conspiracy theories, including about COVID-19 and the 2020 election, in an attempt to “test the ” see if Twitter’s policies on misinformation are still enforced.

The nimble Musk didn’t easily predict what he was going to do.

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He has criticized Twitter’s reliance on advertisers, but issued a statement on Thursday that appeared to assuage their fears. He complained about restrictions on speech on the platform – but then vowed he wouldn’t let it turn into a “hell scene”. And for months, it wasn’t even clear if he wanted to take control of the company.

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After Musk signed a deal to acquire Twitter in April, he attempted to waive it, leading the company to sue him to force him to complete the acquisition. A Delaware judge ordered that the settlement be finalized by Friday.

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives estimates that Musk and his investors overpaid. Even Musk said that the $44 billion price tag for Twitter is too high, but the company has great potential.

In our view, the payout “will drop to one of the highest paying technology acquisitions in the history of Street M&A deals,” Ives wrote in a note to investors. private. “With a fair value that we’ll pegged at around $25 billion, Musk’s acquisition of Twitter remains a big deal he can’t ultimately get rid of once the Delaware Courts get involved.”

After months of uncertainty, a flurry of moves by Musk this week signaled that the deal would in fact succeed.

On Wednesday, he walked into the company’s San Francisco headquarters carrying a porcelain sink and tweeted, “Go to Twitter HQ _ let that sink in!” Then on Thursday, he tweeted, “the bird is freed,” a reference to Twitter’s logo.

On the same day, Musk fired CEO Parag Agrawal, Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal and Chief Legal Counsel Vijaya Gadde. Sean Edgett, who served as Twitter’s general counsel, confirmed on Twitter Friday that he’s also about to lose his job, posting that the company is full of the coolest people. “Take good care of this place, Tweagle,” he added, referring to the company name for Twitter’s legal department. Gadde, meanwhile, has removed all references to the former owner from her Twitter bio, while trolls continue to post thousands of abusive messages in replies to her most recent tweet. that.

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As concerns grow about the direction of Twitter’s content censorship, the European Union’s Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton tweeted to Musk on Friday that “In Europe the bird will fly by our rules. .”

Breton and Musk met in May and appeared in a video together in which Musk said he agreed to the 27-nation bloc’s strict online regulations. Its Digital Services Act threatens big tech companies with billions of dollars in fines if they don’t police harder against illegal or harmful content like hate speech and wrong information.

Musk also spent months figuring out Twitter’s “spam bots” and sometimes making conflicting statements about Twitter’s problems and how to fix them.

He posted a note on Thursday addressing concerns that his plan to promote free speech by cutting back on censorship content opens the door to more online poisoning and deters users. It shows a new emphasis on ad revenue, especially given the need for Twitter to deliver more “relevant ads” _ often meaning targeted ads that rely on collection and analysis. user’s personal information.

About 90% of Twitter’s revenue comes from advertising, but it’s far from the biggest digital marketing platform. Google, Amazon, and Meta account for about 75% of digital advertising. Twitter is just 1% of global digital ad spend by 2022, according to an Insider Intelligence forecast.

Lou Paskalis, former chief communications officer for Bank of America, said Twitter’s most loyal advertisers, many of the Fortune 100 companies, trust the platform and likely won’t leave unless ” some really inappropriate things” happen.

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The takeover means Twitter is becoming a private company. Trading in its shares was suspended on Friday and they will be withdrawn from the New York Stock Exchange next month.


Associated Press writers Jill Colvin and Mae Anderson contributed to this story from New York.


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