Elon Musk has completed his takeover of Twitter Inc, becoming the platform’s new owner and firing numerous top executives at the company.
Musk has reportedly fired multiple high-ranking executives at Twitter Inc following the acquisition deal being closed. Those included CEO Parag Agrawal, chief financial officer Ned Segal and legal affairs and policy chief Vijaya Gadde, according to Reuters.
On Twitter, Musk has changed his bio to “Chief Twit” and changed his location to Twitter HQ, as well as sharing a video of him entering Twitter HQ carrying a porcelain sink. “Let that sink in,” he captioned the post. Earlier today, he tweeted, simply: “the bird is freed.”
the bird is freed
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 28, 2022
Musk has also shared an open letter to Twitter’s company’s advertisers which outlines his purported goals for the platform. “The reason I acquired twitter is because it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence,” he wrote.
“There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society,” Musk continued, adding that in the “relentless pursuit of clicks”, traditional media had “fueled and catered to those polarized extremes”.
“That is why I bought Twitter. I didn’t do it because it would be easy. I didn’t do it to make more money. I did it to try to help humanity, whom I love. And I do so with humility, recognizing that failure in pursuing this goal, despite our best efforts, is a very real possibility,” Musk continued.
The new owner of Twitter concluded the note by acknowledging that the platform “cannot become a free-for-all hellscape, where anything can be said with no consequences”. He added that in addition to “adhering to the laws of the land”, the platform also must be “warm and welcoming to all”.
Dear Twitter Advertisers pic.twitter.com/GMwHmInPAS
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 27, 2022
Musk’s statement echoes sentiments he expressed earlier this year after Twitter accepted his purchase offer. “I hope that even my worst critics remain on Twitter because that is what free speech means,” he tweeted in late April.
The SpaceX and Tesla CEO’s $44billion acquisition of the social media company concludes a long saga that began in April of this year, when he offered to purchase Twitter after becoming its largest shareholder. He was initially offered a seat on the company’s board of directors, but chose not to accept it.
Musk’s offer was initially turned down by Twitter, which put a “poison pill” measure in place to stop a takeover attempt by Musk. The two parties later entered talks before the deal entered further negotiations, with Twitter’s board of directors unanimously accepting Musk’s buyout offer.
Musk, however attempted to terminate the agreement in July, claiming the company had breached contract by misleading him about the number of fake accounts on the platform, and suggesting the number of spambots was much higher than what Twitter had estimated.
Twitter responded by filing a lawsuit against Musk in an attempt to force him to go through with the purchase. The trial was set to begin on October 7, but on October 4, Musk announced he had agreed to move forward with the acquisition, and the deal was closed on Thursday (October 27).