Elon Musk has accused Mark Zuckerberg of having too much power over social media, even as he himself attempted to buy Twitter with a $43 billion offer.
Elon Musk, 50, was speaking at a TED conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, when he took a dig at Mark Zuckerberg over his Meta ownership, which is the parent company of major social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. Asked if his status as the world’s richest person could potentially become a conflict of interest as he attempted to buy Twitter, the Tesla chief attempted to change the narrative as he took a swipe at Zuckerberg, reports The Guardian.
"As for media sort of ownership, I mean, you've got Mark Zuckerberg owning Facebook and Instagram and WhatsApp, and with a share ownership structure that will have Mark Zuckerberg the 14th still controlling those entities," he said, apparently referring to King Louis XIV of France, whose reign was emblematic of absolute monarchy.
"We won't have that at Twitter,” Elon Musk added as the audience laughed.
Mark Zuckerberg holds over 55% of Meta’s voting shares, which gives him majority power.
Meanwhile, Musk's $43 billion offer to buy Twitter could face several challenges: possible government approvals, legal as well as regulatory due diligence, negotiations of a final agreement and, of course, how to pay for it all.
On top of it, Twitter moved Friday to defend itself against Elon Musk's $43 billion hostile takeover bid, announcing a "poison pill" plan that would make it harder for the billionaire to get a controlling stake.
Twitter said its board unanimously adopted a so-called shareholder rights plan, also known as a "poison pill," which kicks in if an investor buys more than 15 percent in shares without the directors' agreement. Musk holds nine percent.
(With inputs from AFP)