Why does Elon Musk want to buy Twitter?

That's the question everyone is asking Thursday morning after the billionaire businessman, Tesla CEO and serial troublemaker made a $43 billion offer to Twitter's board of directors.

"If it is not accepted, I will have to reconsider my position as a shareholder," Musk said, according to the Wall Street Journal. It amounts to, let me play captain or I'll take my ball and go home.

In typically cheeky fashion, Musk tweeted about the potential deal with echoes of The Godfather: "I made an offer."

But why is he doing this?

To understand, we have to go back a bit. A few weeks ago, Musk started complaining that Twitter was not a bastion of free speech and took a survey.

Freedom of expression is essential to the functioning of a democracy. Do you think Twitter strictly adheres to this principle? March 25, 2022

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Musk was expressing a common frustration among some Twitter users who complain of being banned for expressing their opinion on the platform. While 70% of respondents answered "No," I saw the survey as a flawed self-selection exercise. Musk's 84 million followers on Twitter are often followers of his particular brand of libertarian maverick.

Twitter, which is not a government agency but a private company, has no qualms about following the rules of free speech or balance. Instead, as a private company, it must protect its users from harm to themselves and others. You have, as a private company, the right to remove people and their posts as you see fit (if they go outside of the platform's posted terms of service).

It's a bit off because I think Musk knows this, but he just lives to stir the pot and make people think, or maybe think like him.

Later, he insisted on this point and insisted on his belief that the role of Twitter as long as it publishes from the city means that it must adhere to the principles of freedom of expression, because of what I do not know. democracy.

Again, Twitter is not just an American platform. It operates all over the world, even in places that don't support democracy. Musk knows this, but he continued.

Musk eventually bought 9.4% of Twitter stock, joined the board, and then left before he could, but he essentially earned the right to outsized influence and hinted he could go further.

Now we know his true intentions. Musk seeks full ownership and control of Twitter.

But for what purpose?

And then?

If Twitter's board of directors accepts this Faustian deal, a significant portion of Twitter's workforce will leave. Musk must know that too. Do you hope to replace a knowledge-worn workforce with like-minded Muskians?

Let's say he gets what he wants and makes it his own. How quickly will Musk recognize that Twitter is, in fact, not just a US-based public square and that using the Constitution as a model of TOS cannot work for a globalized private company?

Elon Musk runs Telsa around the world. He sells electric cars to people all over the world. It is likely that many of his Twitter followers live outside the United States and dream of living in a democracy where private companies are not subject to state interests as they are in China.

What is Musk's game here?

I know what he said in public, but Elon Musk is not stupid and he should know how it goes. It doesn't end well for Twitter, but maybe that's the point. It's just another feint in the game where Musk treats his billions like Monopoly money, slipping orange €500 bills under the board, tossing them on the table, and demanding Park Place when he really wants Boardwalk. Or maybe he loves them both… so what?

By the time you read this, Twitter may have already rejected Musks' offer and Musk, as he usually does, has sold his shares and left.

Will it also move away from Twitter? Probably, but expect him to be back in six months.

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