Saturday, September 23, 2023

Twitter is now a company of Elon Musk

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Elon Musk, Twitter’s main shitposteradded the company to its business empire after months of legal skirmishes, according to CNBC, The Washington Post. and Insider.

Musk’s first move on Thursday was to oust Parag Agrawal, who was Twitter’s last CEO as a publicly traded company. Chief financial officer Ned Segal and Vijaya Gadde, the company’s chief of policy who had publicly criticized Musk, have also reportedly vacated the building. Sean Edgett, the general counsel, is gone too, The New York Times reports, adding that at least one of these executives was turned away by security. Chief customer officer Sarah Personette was also fired, Insider reports.

The executives received nice payouts for their effort, Insider reports: Agrawal got $38.7 million, Segal got $25.4 million, Gadde got $12.5 million and Personette, who tweeted yesterday about how excited she was about the acquisition of Muskgot $11.2 million

Musk originally offered to buy Twitter in April, then changed his mind and tried to come back in May. Then on October 4, he changed his mind again and filed a letter with the Securities and Exchange Commission confirming his commitment to the original deal. Musk met with Twitter employees this week and is expected to address them Friday as his $44 billion acquisition is complete.

“Sharpen your knives guys.”

Musk wax scheduled to be dropped on October 6 and 7, after moving his depot from the end of September. He announced that he would abide by the contract his lawyers had negotiated just days before the impeachment was set to take place. That deposition was probably inconvenient; a judge found that Musk likely deleted Signal posts relevant to the case. That impeachment was delayed as Musk and Twitter worked toward a deal; Musk even received a court order to halt proceedings to close the deal by October 28.

Questions still remain about what Musk plans to do with Twitter now that he owns it, though he has made a number of public comments. The Washington Post reported that Musk was planning to more than 75 percent of Twitter employees on, citing estimates given to potential Twitter investors. Musk told Twitter staffers that the 75 percent figure was incorrect, Bloomberg reported. In Musk’s text messages, provided to Twitter’s lawyers during the discovery, he and entrepreneur Jason Calacanis, a friend of his, discussed cutting staff by demanding a return to the office.

“Day Zero”, Calacanis texted Musk. “Sharpen your knives guys.” If Twitter employees were forced to return to their offices, 20 percent of the workforce would leave voluntarily, Calacanis wrote. Calacanis also told Musk, “Twitter CEO is my dream job.”

Twitter also faces challenges to its free speech in court as the Supreme Court agreed to take two cases that will determine its liability for illegal content.

Musk, who is also CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has suggested he will change the way Twitter moderation works, potentially easing the kind of policies that permanently banned former President Donald Trump from the platform.

While Musk has said his Twitter acquisition is “not a way to make money,” he has reportedly floated ideas to cut costs and increase revenue. Governments and businesses may be charged a “small fee” to use Twitter, and jobs may be cut to improve business results. Some of Twitter’s current employees have criticized Musk’s plans for the platform as “disjointed” and lacking in detail.

More broadly, Musk has talked about using Twitter to create “X, the everything app”. This is a reference to the Chinese WeChat app, which started out as a messaging platform but has since grown into multiple businesses, from shopping to payment to gaming. “You actually live on WeChat in China,” Musk told Twitter employees in June. “If we can mimic that with Twitter, we’ll be a huge success.”

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