By Donie O’Sullivan and Clare Duffy | CNN
Elon Musk has accomplished his $44 billion deal to purchase Twitter, a supply acquainted with the deal instructed CNN Thursday, placing the world’s richest man in control of one of many world’s most influential social media platforms.
Musk fired CEO Parag Agrawal and two different executives, in line with two individuals acquainted with the choice. Twitter declined to remark.
The deal’s closing removes a cloud of uncertainty that has hung over Twitter’s enterprise, workers and shareholders for a lot of the yr. After initially agreeing to purchase the corporate in April, Musk spent months making an attempt to get out of the deal, first citing considerations in regards to the variety of bots on the platform and later allegations raised by an organization whistleblower.
However Musk’s takeover, and the instant firings of a few of its high executives, now raises a bunch of new questions for the way forward for the social media platform, and the numerous corners of society impacted by it. Musk on Thursday additionally fired CFO Ned Segal and coverage head Vijaya Gadde, in line with two sources.
Musk has stated he plans to rethink Twitter’s content material moderation insurance policies in service of a extra maximalist strategy to “free speech.” The billionaire has additionally stated he disagrees with Twitter’s observe of everlasting bans for individuals who repeatedly violate its guidelines, elevating the chance that a variety of beforehand banned customers may reemerge on the platform.
Maybe most instantly, many will likely be watching to see how quickly Musk may let former President Donald Trump again on the platform, as he has beforehand stated he would do.
In taking these steps, Musk may singlehandedly upend the media and political ecosystem, reshape public discourse on-line and disrupt the nascent sphere of conservative-leaning social media properties that emerged largely in response to grievances about bans and restrictions on Twitter and different mainstream providers.
Musk, a outstanding and controversial Twitter person, grew to become concerned with the corporate earlier this yr when he constructed up a greater than 9% stake in its shares. After asserting he had develop into Twitter’s largest shareholder, Musk accepted after which pulled out of a proposal to sit down on the corporate’s board.
Musk then provided to purchase Twitter outright at a major premium, threatened a hostile takeover and signed a “seller-friendly” deal to purchase the corporate that concerned waiving due diligence. Inside weeks, Musk started elevating considerations in regards to the prevalence of faux and spam accounts on Twitter and in the end tried to terminate the deal. Nevertheless, Twitter sued him to observe by means of with the acquisition settlement and because the contentious authorized battle was nearing trial, Musk stated he would observe by means of with the deal on its authentic phrases in spite of everything.
Earlier this week, Musk visited Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters to fulfill with workers. He additionally posted an open letter to Twitter advertisers, saying he doesn’t need the platform to develop into a “free-for-all-hellscape the place something could be stated with no penalties.”