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Musk plans to take Twitter from being a publicly-traded company to being a privately held platform (Picture: Adrien Fillon/Shutterstock)
The Twitter-Musk saga that’s been brewing over the past few weeks finally reached a conclusion with Elon Musk buying the social media platform for $44 billion (£34.5 billion).
The world’s richest person now owns ‘the closest thing we have to a global consciousness’ as Twitter’s co-founder described the platform.
Musk seems to have big plans for Twitter but to start off here are some of the changes we can expect:
Twitter will become a private company
Musk plans to take Twitter from being a publicly-traded company to being a privately held platform.
The founder of Tesla and SpaceX has agreed to pay shareholders $54.20 in cash for each share.
The move has been supported by Twitter’s co-founder Jack Dorsey who wasn’t happy about the company being owned by Wall Street and the ad model.
In a tweet that since been deleted, Musk raised the possibility of removing advertising from Twitter Blue, the paid version of the app which is available in the US and Australia but not the UK.
Twitter makes 90% of its annual revenue of $5 billion (£3.8 billion) from advertising.
The future of Twitter employees is uncertain
Twitter staff would be the ones immediately affected by the buyout if Musk is planning on restructuring.
CEO Parag Agrawal reportedly told staff that their jobs were safe for the moment, saying there would be no layoffs until Musk took over in six months, and reassuring them about their stock options and benefits.
Some Twitter staff aren’t too pleased about Musk’s takeover of the company, according to internal chats shared online.
The company has reportedly frozen planned changes to the service until Friday, amid what Bloomberg speculated was concern that a rogue employee could ‘push something or mess with the product on the way out the door’.
Twitter’s content moderation policy could change
The Tesla magnate claims he wants to champion ‘free speech’ on Twitter and ‘unlock’ its potential by ‘defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans.’
If this means verifying identities like Facebook, groups like Anonymous have made it clear that they are not happy about it.
Musk has said he would ‘enhance the product with new features’ and ‘make algorithms open source to increase trust’ but not many are buying Musk’s free speech bid with certain public figures even leaving Twitter over it.
‘I fear this free speech bid is going to help this hell platform reach its final form of totally lawless hate, bigotry, and misogyny. Best of luck.’ tweeted actress Jameela Jamil announcing her departure from the platform.
Bringing back Donald Trump
Musk’s acquisition of Twitter has particularly been celebrated by American Republicans including Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene who was permanently banned from Twitter for spreading Covid-19 misinformation.
Donald Trump supporters have called for the former US President’s suspended Twitter account to be reinstated but looks like he’s perfectly happy staying on Trump Social, his very own social media platform.
‘I believe when we have an opportunity to speak with Elon, it’s a question we should address with him,’ said CEO Agarwal when asked if Trump would be reinstated once Musk took over.
Twitter will get its Edit button
Twitter had confirmed this month that it was working on the long-awaited edit feature that users have been requesting for years now.
The company claimed that Musk’s recent poll or him becoming a board member had nothing to do with adding the option to edit tweets that’s been in the works ‘since last year’.
However, having a new owner who has openly favoured the edit button is bound to have some repercussions on how it’s implemented.
The ability to undo a tweet is currently available only to Twitter Blue subscribers, who have a 60-second grace period after posting their tweet in which they can remove it before it is seen by anyone.
With his multiple companies working on things like driverless taxis to spacecrafts, it remains to be seen how much time Musk will be able to devote to his shiny new asset that’s also the world’s most influential social media platform.