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Centi-billionaire Elon Musk provoked Twitter and challenged the company’s CEO Parag Agrawal to a “community discussion” about faux accounts and spam in the midst of a contentious lawful fight over a $44 billion acquisition.
Musk filed a bid with the Securities and Trade to obtain Twitter again in April this calendar year. Soon after the companies agreed to move forward with a get-non-public offer, Musk reported he was terminating his acquisition, and accused Twitter of presenting untrue numbers, such as in its SEC filings, pertaining to the amount of money of monetizable daily lively users, and the selection of spam and bot accounts on the social community.
Twitter then sued Musk in a Delaware chancery court docket to make sure the offer would go by means of as promised, and Musk filed counterclaims and a countersuit there on July 29.
In a series of tweets that Musk began submitting just prior to 1 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 6, Musk interacted with a fan who experienced summarized his accusations about Twitter such as that it was stonewalling him and providing him, “out-of-date data,” and “a fake info set” when he questioned the enterprise for information about how it tabulates mDAU, and estimates for spam and bot accounts.
The Tesla and SpaceX CEO wrote, “Excellent summary of the dilemma. If Twitter just provides their approach of sampling 100 accounts and how they’re verified to be genuine, the deal need to proceed on authentic phrases. Nonetheless, if it turns out that their SEC filings are materially bogus, then it should really not.”
By just after 9 a.m. Saturday early morning, Musk started a Twitter poll asking his followers to vote on no matter whether “[l]ess than 5% of Twitter every day consumers are pretend/spam.” Respondents to the informal poll could pick out just one of Musk’s furnished responses which go through either “Indeed” followed by 3 robotic emoji, or “Lmaooo no.” (The slang abbreviation “lmao” stands for “laughing my a– off.)
A source close to the company says a debate is not going to happen outside of a pending trial.
Attorneys for Musk did not respond to requests to comment on Saturday, and an attorney for Twitter declined to comment on Musk’s Saturday tweets.
Twitter’s attorneys have argued in court filings that Musk gave the company just twenty-four hours to accept his offer before he would present it directly to Twitter shareholders, and waived due diligence including a chance to seek more information on false or spam accounts.
They wrote in court filings, “Musk’s repeated mischaracterizations of the merger agreement cannot change its plain words.”
At an annual shareholder meeting for Tesla on Aug. 4, Musk was asked to speak about Twitter during a question-and-answer session that followed a proxy vote.
He said, drawing laughter from the audience in attendance, “I obviously have to be a little careful what I say about Twitter because there’s this lawsuit and stuff.” He confirmed that the only two publicly traded securities he owns are Tesla and Twitter.
And then he spoke as if he still wants to become the owner of the social networking company, a stark contrast to arguments made by Musk via his attorneys in legal filings in Delaware in which Musk argues he should not have to go through with the deal.
At the Tesla 2022 shareholders’ meeting, Musk said: “I think in the case of Twitter since I use it a lot, shoot myself in the foot a lot, you know, dig my grave, etc. I think it’s — I do understand the product quite well, so I think I’ve got a good sense of where to point the engineering team at Twitter to make it radically better.”
He added that Twitter would “help accelerate” a “pretty grand vision” he had to build a business he’d been thinking about since his earliest years as a tech entrepreneur, X.com or X Corporation.
“Obviously that could be started from scratch,” he said, “but I think Twitter would help accelerate that by three to five years. So it’s kind of like something I’ve thought would be quite useful for a long time. I know what to do. Don’t have to have Twitter for that but, like I said, it’s probably at least a three-year accelerant and I think it’s something that will be very useful to the world.”
Musk didn’t go into any further details at that meeting. However, he reportedly said during a town hall meeting with Twitter employees in June this year that he wanted to grow Twitter’s user base to a billion people and saw Twitter as a platform that could evolve into an app like China’s WeChat, a “super app,” that incorporates everything from messaging, video and social media, to mobile and point-of-sales payments, with a robust app ecosystem.
Unless they reach a settlement first, Twitter and Musk are headed for a five-day trial in Delaware that starts on Oct. 17. The judge ruling on the case is Chancellor Kathaleen St. J. McCormick.
Elon Musk challenges Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal to a discussion on bots
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