Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter is chaotic, to say the least.
He changed his mind about the deal numerous times, making weed jokes and tweeting poop emojis along the way. But now that it’s a reality that he owns a social media platform, many are wondering what happens next.
We’re still in the early stages of the Musk takeover, but it’s already clear that some saw significant economic, political, or reputational gains, while others saw real damage and risks. Here are the winners and losers so far:
Court of Chance, Delaware
Elon Musk is known for breaking business rules and norms. This has caused problems with regulators, but he’s still doing what he wants with little to no repercussions.
Even after the SEC fined Musk $20 million for posting allegedly misleading tweets about Tesla’s plans to go private, Musk pushed the boundaries of the settlement by posting unauthorized tweets. kept spreading.
So when Musk changed his mind about buying Twitter, many believed he could somehow pull out, even if the legal justification seemed flimsy. But this time, Musk couldn’t get out of it. Much of that is due to the Chancery Court of Delaware, the business court that oversees his Twitter case against Musk.
If he continues to fight the lawsuit, Musk will risk having to disclose more potentially embarrassing texts from friends that could damage his image. Faced with a judge with a no-nonsense reputation that could rule against him. Despite an almost endless supply of funding to fund the best legal teams, Musk eventually backed out. We ended our deal with Twitter on the first terms we agreed to in April.
This is a triumph for the rule of law and shows that even if you are the richest person in the world, sometimes you have to do your duty.
Musk considers himself a “free speech absolutist” and his primary motivation for buying Twitter was to make it a more open and unregulated platform for people to express their beliefs. claims that
Conservatives see this as a major victory. U.S. politicians like Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green (R-Georgia) and Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) are backing Elon’s takeover, and Twitter is against the right. We welcome him as a leader in defending their persistently unsupported claims that they are biased against others. Wing content.
Former President Donald Trump said in a post on his social media platform Truth Social on Friday that “Twitter is now in the right hands” and “will no longer be run by radical left-wing lunatics and maniacs.” Musk has previously suggested that Twitter’s banning Trump from its platform after the Jan. 6, 2021 riots was a mistake and that he may have him reinstated. However, last week he said he was still pending a decision on reactivating the account. – An Advisory Board will be formed.
Meanwhile, one of Musk’s first tweets as Twitter’s new owner said his content was being “shadowbanned” or secretly suppressed by Twitter in response to conservative commentator “Catturd.” It told us to “dig into” the user’s claim that they were .
But there are limits to what Musk can do to appease conservative influencers. That’s why, in a tweet Thursday, he promised advertisers he wouldn’t turn Twitter into a “free hellish place where anything you say has no consequences.” Although we have seen some hate speech on the rise since the Musk takeover, Twitter has so far made no public changes to its content moderation policies. He sees his acquisition as a victory.
major shareholder of twitter
Buying Twitter at $54.20 a share is considered a loss for Musk. But stockholders who bought shares in the company at a lower price made a lot of money.
Florida hedge fund Pentwater Capital is expected to make more than $200 million, with many of its largest shareholders being companies that invest money on behalf of high net worth clients, according to a CNBC report. increase. Pension funds that invest in teachers, police officers and civil servants in New York, California, Florida and Wisconsin could also make big gains, according to a Reuters report.
Elon’s inner circle
Part of what we’ve learned through the Elon and Twitter legal proceedings is that many tech investors, founders, and others in the tech industry want to support Elon by funding Twitter’s deal. It was
“You know I’m a ride or die brother — I’ll jump on the Grande [sic] For you,” angel investor Jason Karakanis said in a text to Musk in April. This was made clear in court documents.
Now Karakanis and other tech leaders like investor and former PayPal executive David Sachs are Musk’s advisor during this transition period.
Celebrities such as Calacanis and Sacks (who also host popular tech podcasts) have at least some influence over major platforms important to making news and influencing stock prices. seems to have earned
After Musk’s deal closed, he quickly fired Twitter’s chief executives (CEO Parag Agrawal, CFO Ned Segal, and head of legal, trust and safety Vijaya Gadde). Now he’s turning to the rest of his 7,500 employees on Twitter.
Employees expect Musk to make significant cuts. That number was about 25% of the company’s, according to the Washington Post’s latest estimates. Earlier reports, which Musk denied, put that number at as high as 75% of the company’s staff.
To keep their jobs, some Twitter engineers are asked to work long shifts and deliver new product ideas on tight deadlines. Otherwise, you risk being fired.
A Twitter employee, who spoke on condition of anonymity, called the frenzy “pure chaos” and said employees were “driven by frantic gatherings and projects.”
Other less hopeful employees are quietly waiting to be fired.
“People are tired of talking about it and tired of being vague,” said the employee. ”
Instead of firing employees, Mr. Musk may try to lay them off with a reason.
While most of Twitter’s staff may survive Elon Musk’s transition (some employees are thrilled about the change), working through publicly tumultuous business dealings will be difficult for many. It was a nerve-wracking and demoralizing experience for some.
Elon’s Other Companies
Elon Musk is a busy man. Besides running Twitter, he is also the CEO of electric car company Tesla and rocket company SpaceX.
Both companies are now in a position to lose the attention of hands-on leaders. Musk is pulling some of the senior staff out — he reportedly poached more than 50 Tesla engineers from the company’s autopilot team to join him on Twitter.
All of this means that Musk and his lieutenants will spend less time building cars and rockets and more time figuring out the complexities of running a politically contentious social media company. increase.
Those who have invested in this trade are facing heavy losses. This includes members of the Saudi government, individuals and major banks such as Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Barclays.
That’s because it bought Elon’s now-inflated $54.20 per share purchase price before Twitter’s stock plummeted due to the recent economic slowdown that has depressed the valuations of many other major tech companies.
Some investors have publicly expressed their disappointment, saying they hoped the deal would not go through.
Somewhere in this group, especially big banks and wealthy foreign governments, little little violins are playing.
Unless Musk makes Twitter worth the investment in the long run, they’ll be one of the quickest losers in the Elon-Twitter saga.
It remains to be seen how this will turn out, but for now, Twitter users face a lot of uncertainty about the app’s future.
Anyone who used Twitter in the pre-Elon era knows it can be a cesspool of harassment, bullying, and pernicious conspiracy theories. Over the past few years, however, the company has built internal teams around content moderation and user safety to try and improve its experience. indicates that
Musk’s acquisition could jeopardize those improvements. He said Twitter doesn’t think that much content should be moderated by him and is expected to significantly cut back on his Twitter team doing that work. .
Musk also said he would not remove legal content. This may include a wide range of objectionable content, including racism, violent imagery, and harassment, which are protected by the First Amendment in the United States.
Twitter has already faced an uptick in hate speech since the deal with Musk closed. One study by the Network Contagion Research Institute We found a 500% increase in n-word usage on Twitter within 12 hours of Musk taking over. Twitter’s site integrity officer said this was not due to a change in Twitter’s policy against hate speech, but due to a coordinated trolling campaign to tweet more instances of slurs in line with the Musk takeover. be.
This could adversely affect Twitter’s business. Last week, the big advertiser said GM would pause spending on the platform until he sees what direction Twitter takes under its new leadership. Musk needs to find a balance between satisfying these advertisers while maintaining a commitment to letting users say what they want.
Musk himself is treading that line. In recent weeks, he has posted memes matching the openly anti-Semitic Kanye West and shared a link to a conspiracy theory about Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s attack on her husband Paul Pelosi (mask removed after those tweets).
Of course, users have a lot to gain if Musk can exceed critics’ expectations and transform Twitter into a more open platform while keeping users safe. But given Musk’s personal history of fostering online harassment and misinformation, and the fact that other social media platforms such as Facebook, TikTok, and YouTube have struggled for years to strike this balance. , it seems unlikely that Musk — the constant fucking contributor — will be one. suddenly notice.