After a few weeks of a psychodrama skilfully maintained by both parties, Elon Musk will finally be able to get his hands on Twitter. The boss of Tesla and SpaceX, libertarian very attached to the most total freedom of expression – including for the most extreme voices – puts about 44 billion dollars on the table which will be used to buy the shares of the company with all your might.
Twitter’s board of directors, after refusing the offer, ended up accepting it, thus avoiding a hostile takeover. Confirming a rumor that had the effect of a bomb this Monday morning. If the board of Twitter gave in to Elon Musk, the latter did not move his proposal one iota: he bought the title for $ 54.20 each, as he proposed in mid-April.
After a moment of hesitation, the one who owns just over 9% of the capital of Twitter since the beginning of the month confirmed that he had collected the money necessary for the operation: 21 billion will come out of his pocket, the rest will come from banks and partner funds. Once this package of shares is in his possession, Musk will be able to “take” Twitter out of the stock market and have a free hand to do with it what he wants.
The operation will be completed during the year. Twitter’s first quarter financial results will be released this Thursday, but there will be no conference call.
This prospect of a Twitter property of Elon Musk hardly enchants all those who fear a resurgence of hate speech on the social network. The latter has reinforced its policy of moderation, especially after the January 6, 2021 attack on the Washington Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump.
Elon Musk: “Free speech is the foundation of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital public square where issues vital to the future of humanity are debated. I also want to make Twitter better than ever, improving the product with new features, making algorithms open-source to increase trust, fighting bots, and authenticating all human users.”
This change in ownership could also change (for good? For bad?) the way third-party Twitter clients work with the platform. Despite some improvements, it’s still a bit complicated for Tweetbot, Twitterrific and the others to tune their violins with the social network.