RIP Twitter Or Long Live Twitter Or Something Who Knows
Well fuck. Twitter caved, we mean reached a really good deal, to let Elon Musk buy the company for $44 billion and take it private. If the deal doesn't somehow weirdly fall apart before everything is signed, and if you are a Twitter stockholder, you will receive $54.20 for each share, because haw haw, get it?
This is a blog post about a serious business transaction undertaken by the wealthiest man in the world, who is a serious person and not just a troll.
Elon Musk released a very professional statement for a guy who is seemingly only doing this because A) he can, and B) to let Nazis run roughshod all over the site in the name of "free speech":
“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,” Musk said in a statement included in the press release announcing the $44 billion deal. “I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans. Twitter has tremendous potential – I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it.”
Whatever, you fuckin' dork.
Twitter people also released statements, because that's how this all works:
Bret Taylor, Twitter’s Independent Board Chair, said, “The Twitter Board conducted a thoughtful and comprehensive process to assess Elon’s proposal with a deliberate focus on value, certainty, and financing. The proposed transaction will deliver a substantial cash premium, and we believe it is the best path forward for Twitter’s stockholders.”
Parag Agrawal, Twitter’s CEO, said, “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.”
Dang, Agrawal sounds enthusiastic. "This is fine," he seems to be saying. "Something something fiduciary responsibility," Bret Taylor seems to be saying.
Will people stay on Twitter when/if it becomes a hotbed for Nazis (again) and if/when online bullying reaches new heights never before seen? Who knows. In a piece a couple weeks back, Amanda Marcotte made a case that perhaps the good people who are on Twitter will kind of fall off if they have to swim through too many of Elon's far-right troll buddies for the experience to even be pleasant. And if users dropped off dramatically, then the trolls would be all by their lonesome again, just like they are on thriving platforms like GETTR and Truth Social.
A couple weeks ago, Truth Social CEO Devin Nunes, who literally quit Congress for this, was yapping at Maria Bartiromo about how Twitter is a "ghost town," you know, "especially when you compare it to sites like ours." Yes, he meant Truth Social, with its 513,000 active daily users.
But he's also saying right now -- like literally, just a few hours before this news was announced -- that his boss Donald Trump does not even want to go back on Twitter, even if Elon lets him back.
When asked by Fox News host Maria Bartiromo if Trump will go back on the platform if it is acquired by Elon Musk, Nunes said that “he really doesn’t have an interest in going on Twitter.”
Nunes added that “until you get in there and get that company and wipe out everything that’s been happening there for the last several years… Twitter right now is nothing but a PR wire.”
He added that while it’s got a global footprint, there’s just “nobody there.”
Donald also says nope, he doesn't even want to be on Twitter:
“I am not going on Twitter, I am going to stay on Truth,” Trump, who was permanently suspended from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat following the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol riot, told Fox News on Monday.
“I hope Elon buys Twitter because he’ll make improvements to it and he is a good man, but I am going to be staying on Truth,” he added.
Oh, you bet.
We are just really excited to see how many minutes Trump sticks with that position, especially since he seems so personally involved in his new site that he called it "Truth Central" at his rally this weekend.
Our point is that it's going to be pretty funny when Devin, who again was so stupid he left Congress for this, is left hanging once Elon gives Trump his precious Twitter meth back.
Anyway, maybe it won't be that bad.
I hope that even my worst critics remain on Twitter, because that is what free speech means— Elon Musk (@Elon Musk) 1650903150
Oh God, fuck off.
Thing is, we really do kind of know what it's going to be like. As comedian Dean Obeidallah tweeted, "we will soon be battling all the white supremacists, anti-Semites, anti-Muslim bigots, etc that we used to have to fight but have been kicked off Twitter. And of course Trump will be back to use Twitter to plot his next Jan 6."
Ben Collins, who reports on the intersection between extremists and the internet for a living, has an excellent thread explaining different directions Twitter could go. Here's how that starts:
There are plenty of models for where this site is likely headed. I'm on those sites all day. I cover extremism and lies for a living. You're not gonna like it.— Ben Collins (@Ben Collins) 1650913189
Angelo Carusone from Media Matters has another excellent thread. Here's part of it.
3/ Musk will claim this is about free speech. But, it's actually about ideology. He made that clear, like when talked about the need for liberals/others to become red pilled. Now, he'll have a massive engine to red pill many. Red pilling isn't free speech, it's radicalizing.— Angelo Carusone (@Angelo Carusone) 1650913896
And let's see how this news is playing with one of the five stupidest people in America:
Bless her heart and God save us all.
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