Under the pretext of promoting free speech, the world’s richest man Elon Musk seals the takeover deal of social media platform Twitter. For P$44 billion, Twitter is now under the control of the man whose ventures Tesla and Space X are considered game-changers.
Reuters reported that Twitter shares rose to 5.7% on Monday to close at $51.70, a bit lower than Musk’s offer of a $54.20-a-share transaction. Earlier, the Twitter board tried to dodge the offer with the poison pill deal after Musk owned 9% of the 16-year-old company.
After Musk obtained a 9% stake in the company, Twitter offered him a board seat but he declined, offering a buyout deal instead a few days later.
Musk has 84.1 million followers.
Twitter may not have as many users as other social media platforms but it has become an influential venue for different types of conversations. News reports attribute the start of the anti-government protests that spawned the Arab Spring. People flock to Twitter for news, trending topics, and add to the conversation. Notable personalities — celebrities, politicians, influencers — utilize Twitter to communicate.
Twitter was founded by Jack Dorsey along with Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams on March 21, 2006.
In November last year, Jack stepped down as CEO and he was replaced by Parag Agrawal, chief technology officer of Twitter. Jack also put him in charge of Project Bluesky, an initiative to develop a decentralized social network protocol.
Twitter has made a strong stance against disinformation which drew flak from people who cry free speech. The platform made it easier for users to report accounts spreading false information and banned users that violate its content rules.
On Jan. 8, 2021, two days after the attack on US Capitol by Donald Trump’s supporters, Twitter permanently suspended the former US president’s account.