Elon Musk is proposing to buy Twitter for the original offer price of $54.20 a share, likely avoiding a legal fight over the contentious acquisition.
Musk made the proposal in a letter to Twitter, according to people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified discussing confidential information. Shares in Twitter climbed as much as 18% on the news, and is now halted.
Musk’s proposal to match the original deal terms means Twitter is facing a future under the leadership of a mercurial billionaire who has spent months publicly criticizing its management and questioning its value. It also means that his claims — about how many of Twitter’s users are bots, for instance — are not likely to be scrutinized in a courtroom.
Musk had been trying for months to back out of his contract to acquire Twitter, signed in April. Musk began showing signs of buyer’s remorse shortly after the deal was announced, alleging that Twitter had misled him about the size of its user base and the prevalence of automated accounts known as bots.
Musk formally quit the accord in July and Twitter sued him in Delaware Chancery Court to force him to go forward with the purchase… Musk’s legal team was getting the sense that the case was not going well…
MacDailyNews Take: Twitter can be made valuable, worth far in excess of $54.20 per share, if the platform is returned to an open “town square” marketplace of ideas, sans heavy-handed, one-sided censorship, shadow-banning, etc.
Don't be a bit sorry.https://t.co/UMDhc7hFar
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As we wrote back in April, “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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