Internet Divided over Free Speech, Billionaires and Big Tech

Elon Musk has finally acquired Twitter for around $44 billion, bringing an end to long-drawn speculation. “The Twitter Board conducted a thoughtful and comprehensive process to assess Elon’s proposal with a deliberate focus on value, certainty, and financing. The proposed transaction will deliver a substantial cash premium, and we believe it is the best path forward for Twitter’s stockholders,” said Bret Taylor, Twitter’s Independent Board Chair. Public opinion as shared on Twitter, of course, has been as divided as ever.

While some users thought Musk acquiring Twitter was a heralder of “free speech”, others thought it was severely detrimental. US Senator Elizabeth Warren tweeted, “This deal is dangerous for our democracy. Billionaires like Elon Musk play by a different set of rules than everyone else, accumulating power for their own gain. We need a wealth tax and strong rules to hold Big Tech accountable.”

Meanwhile, Musk himself has said in a tweet, “I hope that even my worst critics remain on Twitter, because that is what free speech means.”

“Twitter has a purpose and relevance that impacts the entire world. Deeply proud of our teams and inspired by the work that has never been more important. Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” said Mr. Musk. “I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the open source algorithms to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans. Twitter has tremendous potential – I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it,” said Parag Agrawal, CEO, Twitter.

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