Elon Musk stays with Twitter: what can happen from now?

It’s already a fact: after weeks of offers, speculation and intrigue, Elon Musk is going to keep Twitter for 44,000 million dollars, as confirmed by Muycomputer. The soap opera of your purchase is closed, but another related to what will happen from now on opens. Or rather from the closing of the purchase process, which can last almost until the end of the year. At best, Twitter will have changed hands by early this fall. But since it is very unlikely that the authorities in charge of monitoring competition in this type of operation will object, before the end of this year, Elon Musk will be the owner of the company.

What can happen from that moment has already made rivers of ink run in all kinds of areas. Because given Musk’s background and personality, anything can happen. Both in terms of the company’s staff and the operation of the social network, and of course, in what may affect its users, whose positions are divided between Musk’s supporters and those who say they want to leave the company. social network in view of the change of owners.

The truth is that Musk leaves no one indifferent. Also that, at least in the short term, it is unlikely that there will be a flight of users to networks like Mastodon. They will remain awaiting events and news, which will probably not arrive until next year.

What will happen from now on with Twitter?

Even before formalizing the purchase, Musk has already commented, of course through Twitter, what plans he has for the company. The first goes through take Twitter out of the stock market and turn it into a private company. also plan fire the entire board of directors and start up another that does not receive a dollar of salary for it (those who form it now collect a combined 3 million dollars a year, something that Musk has already complained about). And according to him, he assures, improve freedom of expression on the network, although in the case of Musk it will be necessary to see what freedom of expression means by a person known for not excessively respecting that of the employees of his other companies.

Musk has also disclosed some of his plans in the company’s purchase statement. In it he states that “freedom of expression is the foundation of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where vital issues for the future of humanity are discussed. He also wants to make Twitter better than ever by improving the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, cracking down on spam bots, and identifying all humans. Twitter has tremendous potential, and I look forward to working with the company and the user community to unlock it.«.

The first thing that draws attention to these statements, and what Elon Musk has been repeating endlessly for months, is that there is currently not enough freedom of expression on Twitter. He sets out to improve it, but it is not at all clear what he means by that.

Many fear that this means the return to the network of Donald Trump, whose account was suspended after the events of January 6, 2021, which led to the invasion of the United States Capitol by Trump supporters and members of ultra organizations. But Trump has already assured, in a statement sent to Fox News, that he has no interest in returning to the social network, even if it changes owners, and that he will use the Truth Social platform.

Elon Musk and freedom of expression

Most also doubt what will Musk understand by freedom of expression, since as a result of his behavior on the network and how he treats the employees of his other companies, his concept of freedom of expression seems peculiar. Musk tweets frequently, but he’s not shy about blocking critics or comments he doesn’t like. In addition, when he fires workers, he forces them to sign agreements prohibiting them from making comments or statements against the company.

In the case of Twitter, what seems most likely is that Musk is going to do changes in the content moderation system to leave more wide sleeve to users. But we will have to see how he does it, because despite what he thinks about freedom of expression, he will have to comply with the content regulations that are in force in each of the countries in which the network has a presence. In the European Union, for example, with the approval of the Digital Services Law, companies with more than 53 million users will be required to moderate their content. And let’s see how Musk manages to say that in Europe Twitter does not reach that number of users so as not to moderate its content.

According to CNBC, Tesla employees have assured that there have been situations of sexism, harassment and racist behavior, in addition to unsafe working conditions, in the company. Many have also spoken about retaliation after speaking publicly about such issues. It is not surprising, therefore, that the current employees of Twitter are uneasy and have asked, in meetings with the CEO of the company and more recently also with the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Bret Taylorwhat is going to happen from now on.

The Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal, has acknowledged to Twitter workers that he does not have many concrete answers to his doubts about what will happen when Elon Musk takes the reins of the company, and that they now have a few months of uncertainty before them. He has assured, according to The Verge, that no layoffs are planned for now, but he does not know what will happen next. What Bret Taylor has made clear is that the board of directors of the company will be dissolved when the purchase operation is closed. Agrawal is also likely to leave his position and leave the company.

Some Twitter workers currently receive part of their salary in shares of the company, so they also wanted to know what will happen next in this regard. They already have confirmation that once the company becomes private they will not receive shares, so more than one is already wondering if it will compensate them to work on Twitter from an economic point of view.

As for the economic future that awaits the company, Musk has stated that he is not concerned at all. But he will be pressured to obtain returns on the investment made. Because not all the money that he is going to invest in the purchase of Twitter is his, but rather it comes from different entities. That is why he will have to take money from the social network.

It is not clear what he will do to achieve it, and he may make radical changes in this regard. It could, for example, abandon advertising on the platform (Elon Musk does not believe in the advertising model to obtain income), a measure adopted by one of the CEOs of the company, Dick Costolo, who when he decided to insert advertising on Twitter recognized that I didn’t do it for fun, but because it was the fastest and easiest way to get money at the time.

Elon Musk may then decide to bet on subscriptions, with various plans and advantages associated with each one. But he could also choose to move toward making Twitter a more decentralized platform, and then charge developers who want to build projects around Twitter for access to its APIs. If Musk is clear about what to do at this point, he has not let go. But anything is possible, given Musk’s volatile personality. He now he can have an idea, and in a few months, another completely different one. Meanwhile, he has been asking social network users from his account for a few weeks what they want to see on Twitter in the future.

What does Jack Dorsey think about all this?

While all this was happening, all the eyes of the users of the social network, the media and the global technological landscape were posts on the Twitter account of the company’s former CEO, Jack Dorsey, the only one of the former founders of the company who continues to have a relationship with her, and who will leave its board of directors in May when his term as a member ends, without standing for re-election, after having resigned a few months ago. Dorsey still owns shares of Twitter, albeit only a small percentage, and it’s no secret that he wasn’t at all happy with the board and his performance over the past few years.

In 2020, the funds Silver Lake and Elliott Management they took over a notable percentage of the company’s shares. The latter is headed by Paul Singer, a billionaire very close to the Republican Party, to whom he regularly donates generous amounts of money. And since his purchase of shares, from Elliot Management they tried to expel Jack Dorsey from his position. In addition, they put a new independent president, Patrick Pichette, on the board of directors, who exerted pressure from within.

In 2020 they were unable to remove Dorsey from his position, and the parties reached an agreement so that he would remain the CEO of Twitter. But the calm did not last long, and Dorsey resigned a few months ago, probably tired of having to deal with members of a board that he had against him. Except perhaps for his successor, Parag Agrawal, whom Dorsey has stated that he shared his vision (both wanted Twitter to become a decentralized network), and whom he therefore chose to succeed him.

Well, as soon as Elon Musk began to move his chips, Dorsey began to express his position on the matter, albeit with a dropper. Until the purchase has been effective he has not communicated what he thinks of her. But if criticized the current board of directors a few days ago, in line with some Musk tweets in which he protested that the board members did not own almost any shares of Twitter, and that they should not therefore make decisions that affected their shareholders. Finally, and once the purchase was closed, Dorsey has made his opinion public. Surprisingly, agree with her. In addition, he has praised Musk and indicated that the operation is the solution to the situation that the company is experiencing.

Through a Twitter thread, led by a tweet linking to a Radiohead song titled “Everything in its right place”, Dorsey has pointed out that he loves Twitter and that it is “the closest thing we have to a global consciousness“, in addition to saying that “the idea and its services is the only thing that matters to me, and I will do whatever it takes to protect both«. He has also pointed out that “as a company, Twitter has always been my only concern and my biggest regret. It has been owned by Wall Street and the advertising model. Getting it back from Wall Street is the right first step.”

He has also assured that “At first» do not believe that «no one should own or run Twitter. It wants to be a public good at the protocol level, not a company. Apart from the problem that it is actually a company, Elon is the singular solution that I trust. I trust in your mission to spread the light of consciousness. Elon’s goal of creating a platform that is “most trustworthy and broadly inclusive” is correct. He is also Parag’s goal, and that’s why I chose him.”. Dorsey has thanked both for getting the company out of an impossible situation, and has assured that he is completely convinced that what he has done is the right path.

Many see in the operation a way out to get money from Twitter, something that currently its directors probably no longer knew how to do after launching the subscriptions and, of course, their shareholders are looking for. But it is possible that for Dorsey, according to his statements, this operation is something more personal. Only time will tell, and only time will also tell what will happen to Twitter from now on. Both its shareholders and its users are waiting expectantly for the next events.

Photo: Felixsj

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