Business tycoon Elon Musk proposed to buy TWITTER for $43 billion after previously acquiring 9.1% of the company’s stock and becoming its largest single shareholder. Elon Musk is an entrepreneur, investor, and a business tycoon. He is the CEO, founder and chief engineer at “SpaceX”; angel investor, CEO and product architect of “Tesla”; founder of ”The Boring Company”; co-founder of “Neuralink” and “OpenAI”.
The Billionaire Pattern
Buying media companies has been a trend among modern-day billionaires. Mukesh Ambani owns “Network 18”, Jack Ma owns “South China morning post”, Jeff Bezos owns “Washington post”, Mark Benioff owns “Time” magazine and now Elon Musk owns “TWITTER”.
Hard thought makes one wonder if the Twitter takeover might be Musk’s mot difficult and riskiest endeavours.
Is it possible that Musk’s attempt to innovate Twitter might backfire on him?
How can a social media platform disturb a genius billionaire businessman?
Elon Musk has declared the privatisation of TWITTER, which means this social media platform with 400 million active users will become a toy in his hands.
After the sale, CEO Parag Agrawal tweeted “Twitter has a purpose and relevance that impacts the entire world. Deeply proud of our teams and inspired by the work that has never been more important.”
Jack Dorsey,, the founder of twitter said he isn’t fond of the idea of becoming a one man show, but he trusts Musk. He said “Twitter is the closest thing to a global consciousness”.
Calling it a global consciousness might be a slight over-exaggeration though. Given the fact that twitter is quite small in comparison to other social social media platforms like Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Snapchat and even TikTok and Pinterest.
But it’s true that Twitter is the fastest and most relevant means to spread news and opinion. That makes it possible for the privatisation of twitter to cause regulatory problems to Musk. Anything that goes wrong over there might be blamed on Elon Musk, and now he would have to choose between diverting his attention to Twitter or Mars and Tesla.
Twitter does lack a significant amount of features that have made it lack behind other social media platforms.
- Make twitter’s algorithm transparent
- Eliminate spam bots.
- Edit button (There are still debates over this issue)
- Verified badge to all ‘humans’
Musk’ free speech call for twitter
Musk considers himself a ‘free speech absolutist’. He 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”.
The entire world has been indulged in debating about where and how the line for free speech will be drawn. Will this absolutism include Hate Speech, Targeted Harassment and Spreading fake news? Would an absolute free speech promote Doxing, Misogyny, Homophobia and racism?
An absolutist speech on Twitter will definitely increase trash. Civilised conversation in a community can only take place with the help of some moderation.
Musk thinks Twitter is a huge problematic space (which it actually is) and believes he can find solutions through the mediums that have always worked for him i.e. science, maths and engineering, like they helped him successfully solve the issue of electric car manufacturing and rocket reuse. But removing Bots and free speech absolutism on Twitter might just make things worse instead of solving them.
Twitter isn’t an engineering problem, it’s a human predicament.
Child pornography, incitement of violence, misleading information, harassment; issues like these can’t be worked on with coding and engineering, they demand human intervention. Facebook itself had an oversight board of experts to regulate these issues. Twitter was trying to change its governance model in the same way, but the possibilities of the board are dissolved now, since Twitter is in the hands of One man.
Besides, Twitter has to obey different rules in different nations, this doesn’t exactly sound like a favourable condition for ‘free speech absolution’.
If Instagram is famous for pictures and reels, Twitter is famous for politics and lifestyle too, but Twitter isn’t a money-making body yet. It has seen a bit of profit in 2018-19, but otherwise, it has always been running in loss.
Musk has more than just free speech on his plate; he’ll have to face regulations, global rules and financial struggle, etc. One wonders what will become of Tesla and SpaceX when Twitter starts consuming all of his time and energy.