Elon Musk offers to buy Twitter for $41 billion, allow free speech

Elon Musk has offered to buy Twitter outright with a $41 billion cash offer on Thursday. Musk says Twitter needs to be taken private in order to become a platform for free speech.

Twitter plummets 11% on concerns about Apple privacy policy changes

“I invested in Twitter as I believe in its potential to be the platform for free speech around the globe, and I believe free speech is a societal imperative for a functioning democracy,” Musk wrote in a letter sent to Twitter Chairman Bret Taylor.

Shares in Twitter surged 12% in premarket trading.

Reuters:

“Twitter has extraordinary potential. I will unlock it,” Musk said in a letter to Twitter’s board on Wednesday, which was made public in a regulatory filing on Thursday.

Musk’s offer price of $54.20 per share represents a 38% premium to Twitter’s April 1 close, the last trading day before the Tesla chief executive’s stake of more than 9% in the social media platform was made public.

“Since making my investment I now realize the company will neither thrive nor serve this societal imperative in its current form. Twitter needs to be transformed as a private company,” Musk said in his letter to Twitter Chairman Bret Taylor.

Musk, who calls himself a free-speech absolutist, has been critical of the social media platform and its policies, and recently ran a poll on Twitter asking users if they believed it adheres to the principle of free speech.

Based on Twitter’s Wednesday closing price of $45.85, its price in pre-market trading in New York implied a 35% chance of the company accepting Musk’s offer.

“The big question for the Twitter board now is whether to accept a very generous offer for a business that has been a serial underperformer and tends to treat its users with indifference,” Michael Hewson, Chief Market analyst at CMC Markets, said after the announcement of Musk’s offer.

“It would be hard for any other bidders/consortium to emerge and the Twitter board will be forced likely to accept this bid and/or run an active process to sell Twitter,” Wedbush Securities analyst Daniel Ives wrote in a client note.

Here is the letter Musk sent to Twitter as disclosed in the SEC filing:

I invested in Twitter as I believe in its potential to be the platform for free speech around the globe, and I believe free speech is a societal imperative for a functioning democracy.

However, since making my investment I now realize the company will neither thrive nor serve this societal imperative in its current form. Twitter needs to be transformed as a private company.

As a result, I am offering to buy 100% of Twitter for $54.20 per share in cash, a 54% premium over the day before I began investing in Twitter and a 38% premium over the day before my investment was publicly announced. My offer is my best and final offer and if it is not accepted, I would need to reconsider my position as a shareholder.

Twitter has extraordinary potential. I will unlock it.

– Elon Musk

MacDailyNews Take: Broken long ago, Twitter is a slanted, myopic joke as it is currently run.

Hopefully Musk will be an agent of change for a platform that should, at this point, be considered a public utility that allows for all viewpoints to be openly discussed.

Elon Musk is a doer.

The doers are the major thinkers. The people that really create the things that change this industry are both the thinker and doer in one person. – Steve Jobs


Art and music, design and performance, opinion, fiction, provocation, are what we work to enable. That fills us with such a sense of pride as well as a deep sense of responsibility because we know that these freedoms require protection; not just the forms of speech that entertain us, but the ones that challenge us, the ones that unnerve and even displease us. They’re the ones that need protection the most. Unpopular speech, unpopular art, and unpopular ideas; speech that questions the people in power.

It’s no accident that these freedoms are enshrined and protected in the First Amendment. They’re the foundation of so many of our rights. We means we all have a stake, and a role, in defending them. This is a responsibility that Apple takes very seriously… We work to defend these freedoms enabling people around the world to speak up.Apple CEO Tim Cook, accepting the Newseum’s 2017 Free Expression Award on April 18, 2017


The Internet has become as important as anything man has ever created. But those freedoms are being chipped away. Please, I beg you, open your senses to the will of the people to keep the Internet as free as possible… I don’t want to feel that whichever content supplier had the best government connections or paid the most money determined what I can watch and for how much. This is the monopolistic approach and not representative of a truly free market in the case of today’s Internet.Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak for The Atlantic, December 21, 2010


A few more quotes:

• Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech. ― Benjamin Franklin

To view the opposition as dangerous is to misunderstand the basic concepts of democracy. To oppress the opposition is to assault the very foundation of democracy. ― Aung San Suu Kyi

• Because if you don’t stand up for the stuff you don’t like, when they come for the stuff you do like, you’ve already lost. ― Neil Gaiman

Censorship reflects society’s lack of confidence in itself. It is a hallmark of an authoritarian regime. – Potter Stewart

• Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers. ― United Nations

• If freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. ― George Washington

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53 Comments

  1. Terminally woke, broken Twitter needs to be transformed into a free speech public square, not the leftist censorship cesspool it currently is.

    1. Well, thinking about it…

      Currently Musk is Twitter’s problem.
      If he buys it, Twitter becomes his problem.
      So folks think all the none red_necks will hang around to be shouted down by the vocally loud but stupid brigade…no chance – they’ll exit in droves leaving a ghost town echo chamber just like Truth Social, Gettr and Parler
      For me, just another reason NOT to be on Twitter

      1. Libtards like your self that do not defend and respect free speech when Twitter is UNSHACKLED by censors deserve to be shouted down. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. The RECKONING IS COMING and Lord Trump will rightly rule AGAIN…

        1. “ The RECKONING IS COMING and Lord Trump will rightly rule AGAIN…” ???
          So GuttersnipeTrashGoeB wants to overturn the Founding Fathers Declaration of Independence from British tyrannical rule by Royal Decree, only to promote a homegrown in_growing_toenail to rule – by Lordly Decree?
          Agent Provocateur? Delusional? Just plain stupid? Troll?…Scum!

          1. Clueless DEFLECTION, certainly to be expected from a brainless Leftist by the handle of GOT NOTHING.

            Breaking News: The issue is not “Lord Trump,” I just threw that in as bait and Man ‘O Man, you swallowed the whole BAIT, hook, line and sinker in record time… FOOL!

            The issue is free speech for conservative voices, ALL voices at the end of the day, really — you and your ilk do not support, go it now moron?…

            1. Weak, very weak. And I whacked your Qanonesque meme back in your face. Joke? well you would know.
              The problem with your so called Free speech’is that you recognize no limits, neither the words used, the alternative factual narrative, when and where your free speech can be exercised and what constitutes harassment.
              The logical conclusion of unbound freedom of speech is akin to anarchic bedlam. You don’t even seem to recognize that groups and organizations have a right to privacy of association, the right to organize their lives and businesses in a way that suits them without you banging on the door demanding entrance and that they change to suit you and your foolishness; that is intentionally disruptive. You then refuse to explain anything beyond “It’s my right!”
              It seems to be another version of the sordid ‘conversion therapy’ violating the LGBTQ community. You don’t like Twitters t&c policies, their right to self determination or their independence, so you cheer on a megalomaniac intent on converting Twitter to a hellish shark pond where absolutely nobody other than deluded cultists who think they know but don’t – has an inkling of what the actual fsck is going on. Anywhere. Can’t have it my way, well, just buy it and convert everyone to my way of thinking.
              Sounds like tyrannical fascism to me. Just look at Purim’s Russia. Is that what you want?
              Don’t know why I bother, fondling your in_growing_toenail is more your thing.

            2. Got Nothing, you are tedious BRAINLESS in so many conspiracy ways and frankly, a waste of time. Sleep well with your ridiculous theories only a whack job Leftist could love…

            3. @Gotcha Friday, April 15, 2022 at 1:43 pm

              “ GuttersnipeTrashGoeB…takes his ball home in a sulk.”

              No surprise you LIE. I’m right here.

              Typical Leftist has to lie to make himself feel superior. Concocting a FALSE victory is what Leftists do daily, they simply can’t handle the TRUTH about themselves.

              “Not just weak but actually pathetic.”

              In that fantasy moron pea brain of yours, enjoy your DELUSION.

              Maybe it’s time for the guttersnipe GotNothing LIAR to go home…

    2. The term “leftist” is codeword for the fact that you are a right wing extremist who believes obvious lies and bonkers conspiracies. Move over to “Truth Social” Ya Qanon whack job.

      1. STFU You blotted RADICAL LIBTURD LEFTIST. You mock and label conservatives with the same adjectives YOU REALLY are. Extremism is far more expose on the left. You are for sure a fanatic of the climate change BS religion, the BIGGEST SCAM and LIE to humanity. Freaking HYPOCRITE.

          1. So according to your infantile logic, your buddy Putin is a far right monster? LOL that’s rich. Happens to be that he was a commie, and socialism is “light” communism. I’ve never seen conservatives rallying out protesting burning cars and private businesses. Have you forgotten Seattle? So, NO buddy, you is wrong.

    3. Many questions.
      Why and for what reason does Twitter need to be transformed to a free speech square?
      Are they breaking the law? Are they forcing anyone against their will to use twitter when they don’t like it? Are they denying existence to Truth Social, Parler and Gettr? Isn’t competition the very essence of capitalism?
      And doesn’t anything de facto just mean that the majority uses it because they like it for what it offers? Similarly, you may well ask why said de facto majority do not use the aforementioned alternatives?
      Why does the de facto majority have to be over ruled by a fringe minority.
      Absent considered reasoning means your opinion is worthless.

      Maybe it’s because the de facto majority of the board…you know…it’s called democracy are opposed to Musk and have invoked the poison pill solution to issue more shares to dilute the influence of hostile takeover bids that seek to weaken its stance on the Big Lie and hate speech?

      1. “Why and for what reason does Twitter need to be transformed to a free speech square?”

        1st, nice admission that it currently isn’t a free speech square.

        2nd, Twitter has been wrongly ‘censoring’ truthful and factual comments. The social media blocking of the NYPosts’s story on Hunter’s laptop is a perfect example.

        Last point. Liberals believe they are more intelligent and enlightened than Republicans. So if Musk buys it and allows free speech, stay on twitter and educate the right wingers with facts. Seriously, WTF are leftists so afraid of with a free and open internet?

        1. 1) Comprehension problem much? I was quoting First not admitting anything one way or another.
          2) How is acting on your stated t &cs “wrong”? It’s entirely legal for any platform to run themselves as they wish. And since we’re here, is Apple also wrong to protect their brand? To reject outside influence ?
          Your last point is pure projection, you just politicized it.
          Seriously, WhyTF can’t Republicans build a bigger megaphone – are they afraid to compete?
          Lastly you are confusing the internet which is a vehicle, with a few passengers who want to drive it in a different direction to the majority’s stated destination.
          And while we’re on the subject of free speech, why are some Republicans intent on banning some books on verifiable historical events since the US came into existence? Isn’t authorship also protected free speech?

        2. “1st, nice admission that it currently isn’t a free speech square.”

          Kramer, Twitter never has been a free speech square.

          “2nd, Twitter has been wrongly ‘censoring’ truthful and factual comments”

          You mean wrongly according to you. Twitter can censor whatever it wants to, any time it wants to and your First Amendment rights won’t be violated because Twitter is a private entity, not a government organization.

  2. Elon doesn’t mess around or take his sweet time 😮 And there’s an implied threat if his offfer is not accepted. He says he’ll sell this current 9+ percent stake to try a different approach to promote free speech. That will reverse recent increase in Twitter share price (caused by Musk) and send Twitter back down, probably down more.

  3. Utradea
    1m
    👀#TWTR
    $TWTR

    Quote from SEC filing

    “If the deal doesn’t work, given that I don’t have confidence in management nor do I believe I can drive the necessary change in the public market, I would need to reconsider my position as a shareholder.”

      1. Note that “Dave” the genius cannot refute any of the points made I’ve above, so he wants to censor them instead. Likely, he works for Twitter (maybe not for that much longer).

            1. Let’s play a game. It’s called “Who Fell Asleep In Civics101?

              If you answered GeoB, First Then or Truth Detector then congratulations! You’ve won. You see, in their ranting and raving about their perceived political slights they’ve forgotten (or conveniently overlooked) one very important fact – FoS does NOT apply to privately held companies. Perhaps one day they’ll get it. Doubtful but we can hope.

  4. It’s a free market and as a free market enterprise, Twitter can decide what the principle of conduct will be within their property. It’s their right, not yours. As a free individual, you have the right to compete in the free market with your own product. Stop bitching about your right to free speech within their product.

    Right-winger nut jobs are always screaming about government interference and censorship in business/life but they don’t seem to understand the basics of free market enterprise within a privately owned product/service—get out there and compete.

    1. Musk is competing, dullard.

      “It’s a free market and as a free market enterprise, Twitter can decide what the principle of conduct will be within their property. It’s their right, not yours.”

      Say the same thing when Elon Musk owns Twitter and makes it the de facto public square it should be, not the woke leftist cesspool of censorship that it is currently.

  5. “The key to a functioning democracy is the ability for anyone to spread dangerous misinformation, conspiracy theories and hate speech in order to brainwash their fellow nut jobs into committing acts of violence” – Thomas Jefferson

    1. Goebbels was in favor of free speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech.

      — Noam Chomsky

      1. Chomsky is a straight shooter. You are not. It is interesting how you actively filter selective posts on this site, while letting spam and off-topic propaganda proliferate. It’s not Akismet doing all the censorship here. Hypocrisy much?

        Free speech extremists admit that there must be some minimum standard for civility. Infinite freedom quickly devolves to mob rule. Every human activity needs rules. Why did MDN bother establishing its own rules of conduct? Never mind your enforcement is slipshod … to put it kindly. You know very well you speak one thing and do another.

        Musk’s latest move is just another example of a billionaire buying a bigger amplifier to espouse his opinions onto the masses. It will be interesting to see how he montetizes the users to recoup his investment. You might not like the results any more than Tesla’s constant vehicle tracking and Google ties.

        1. You sound pretty confused, which is unsurprising given your past comments.

          I wish I could “actively filter selective posts on this site.”

          Musk’s opinion is to be a “free speech absolutist” which is light years better than the woke, leftist, corrupt establishment bullshit filter in place on Twitter today.

          1. I don’t know why I bothered to speak, but so be it. Might as well address the elephant.

            Within 5 minutes of MDN posting this page, you put up a highly opinionated post slandering Twitter, while at the same time linking to Twitter . You shared the non-Apple related musings of some cherry-picked personalities of a political persuasion that you claim are unable to communicate freely on what you declare is a “leftist censorship cesspool”. That is blatant hypocrisy. That is bald faced politicking on a tech blog. Who’s confused?

            Either you work at MDN or you are a troll that posts your strong political opinions nonstop on this site, ALWAYS without factual references, and NEVER anything to do with Macs.

            Also, it is without question that some posts have been selectively taken down from this site. Yet your inflammatory rhetoric continues day after day. No wonder this site has lost so much readership. If you’re connected with MDN, then it’s cowardly to post what you do on a site supposedly dedicated to the Mac under your many noms de plume. If you’re not connected with MDN, then please find a forum that has a different mission statement. Do you remember your mission statement? It’s buried here: https://macdailynews.com/contact/

            “Our mission is to scour the Web for articles that interest Apple product users, remark on the content of these articles, provide news about Apple Inc. and their products, and to opine about all things related to Apple.”

            I don’t see how your vitriolic complaining about Twitter, or people of different political alignments than yours, has anything to do with Apple or the Mac. But you dare to accuse me of being confused….

            1. Several things you assumed and just wrong.

              “You shared the non-Apple related musings of some cherry-picked personalities of a political persuasion that you claim are unable to communicate freely on what you declare is a “leftist censorship cesspool”.

              The “non-Apple related musings” are indeed cherry picked to MAKE THE POINT Twitter is indeed a cesspool of Leftist LUNACY and any second of any day CENSORS free speech from conservative, independent and other alternative voices. Do you disagree?

              “That is blatant hypocrisy. That is bald faced politicking on a tech blog. Who’s confused?”

              Since when is pointing out REALITY hypocrisy?

              “Within 5 minutes of MDN posting this page, you put up a highly opinionated post slandering Twitter, while at the same time linking to Twitter.”

              Yeah, so, what’s your point? Nail the bastards where they live.

              “Either you work at MDN or you are a troll that posts your strong political opinions nonstop on this site, ALWAYS without factual references”

              This is where you went off the deep end using the absolute statement “ALWAYS without factual references.” You can’t be serious or as dumb as a box of rocks. To use your wording, the elephant posts more factual references than anyone on this site and we all have learned MUCH from the detailed research. Regarding working for MDN — PROVE IT!

              Next time you bring false accusations to the table, get your facts straight beforehand…

            2. Rofl. GeoB complaining about someone not bringing facts is rich.

              “The “non-Apple related musings” are indeed cherry picked to MAKE THE POINT Twitter is indeed a cesspool of Leftist LUNACY and any second of any day CENSORS free speech from conservative, independent and other alternative voices. Do you disagree?”

              Twitter can remove anything it wants to, any TIME it wants to.

              Your First Amendment rights are NOT being violated. They can promote whatever agenda they want to. Seeing as you clearly weren’t paying attention in Civics101 GeoB, here’s a key fact for you: The First Amendment free speech clause only applies to the Government – not to private entities.

              Your rantings and conspiracy theories don’t factor in.

  6. Bingo. Posted about 20 times and all have been censored. If they really want to make me look stupid they should release them all so everyone can see me repeating myself like an idiot. i have zero faith this harmless post will make it through, but kudos to steve88.

    Dave

    MDN silences liberal views

  7. I made an offer to buy Apple but Tim Cook called and told me I was a pipeline away from being turned into organic material for Apple’s garden – he’s doesn’t tolerate fools and I was suitably chastened, so to make up for it I doubled my offer to 50c

  8. Twitter is by policy actively banning users who don’t support government policies. This is censorship like in Russia, China and North Korea. Freedom of speech means listening to other oppinions. So if Musk wants to achievee this, he is doing the right thing. The woke Twitter board is in panic. Good so. REPEAT.

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