Everyone’s favorite insufferable billionaire is here to reassure the internet. Under his (pending) leadership, Twitter will not became a “free-for-all hellscape,” Elon Musk said in a tweet composed of screenshots on Thursday. What he’s seemingly forgotten, however, is that Twitter is already a hellscape.
The multi-paragraph statement, directed generally to “advertisers” outlined Musk’s alleged true motivation for buying Twitter. “I didn’t do it because it would be easy. I didn’t do it to make more money. I did it to try to help humanity, whom I love,” he wrote. Which feels more than a little self-aggrandizing and melodramatic, considering most of the difficulty the Tesla CEO has faced throughout the acquisition process has been clearly self imposed.
In more specific terms, Musk reaffirmed his “free speech” vision of Twitter as a “common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated.” However, the post did seem to be one of the first instances of Mr. SpaceX directly acknowledging the necessity of guard rails (i.e. moderation) and abiding by the law. He noted that the site can’t be a space “where anything can be said with no consequences,” and hinted a version of the platform where users can opt in or out of some sort of free speech zone. “Our platform must be warm and welcoming to all, where you can choose your desired experience according to your preferences,” Musk wrote.
Considering the post was addressed to advertisers, it seems that the world’s richest man is taking preemptive steps to reassure funders that they won’t be purchasing ad-space on the equivalent of 8chan. However, Twitter has been slipping on the ad-attracting front on its own. A recent internal report from the company noted that, amid a loss of heavy users, pornography and cryptocurrency have become the fastest growing site sectors—both content categories that advertisers are often reluctant to be associated with.
Yet, company struggles aside, the will-he-won’t-he saga of Musk’s embattled Twitter acquisition looks like it will *probably* be coming to some sort of conclusion on Friday. Last week, Musk seemed eager to complete the deal in a call with Tesla shareholders. Just yesterday, he waltzed into Twitter headquarters carrying a sink as part of a cringeworthy bit. On Thursday, Twitter shares were frozen at around $53.94 ahead of the assumed-purchase. Musk’s $44 billion offer is set to go through, netting investors $54.20 per share.
The Delaware judge presiding over Twitter’s lawsuit against Musk previously set an October 28 deadline for a finalized deal. If all goes as expected tomorrow, the legal proceedings will end along with this month’s long roller-coaster ride.
Unfortunately, for Twitter employees, the journey is likely just beginning. Workers at the company were incensed by Musk’s threats of 75% layoffs, and sent a letter to the board calling the billionaire “reckless,” earlier this week. Musk since stated that he wouldn’t actually be cutting three-fourths of the company. But you never know, he’s flip-flopped before.