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Elon Musk talks about "unresolved matters" with Twitter at Qatar Economic Forum

The billionaire had put the $44 billion Twitter offer on "temporary hold" on May 13 until it could be determined whether fake users make up fewer than 5% of the platform's entire userbase.

June 21, 2022 / 01:55 PM IST

Tesla CEO Elon Musk says there are still  a few 'unresolved matters' with Twitter, and he’s still waiting for a resolution on the matter of how many bots are on the social media platform.

Speaking at the Qatar Economic Forum organised by Bloomberg, Musk said, “There is the question of, will the debt portion of the round come together and then will the shareholders vote in favour.”

Musk had put the $44 billion Twitter offer on "temporary hold" on May 13 until it could be determined whether fake users make up fewer than 5% of the platform's entire userbase.

Here are key takeaways from Musk's address:

Twitter and trouble in China

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Musk's planned acquisition of Twitter has raised concerns that the social media site could be compromised by Beijing.

Musk's large investments in China might be jeopardised if Twitter offends China's Communist Party, which has banned the site at home but has used it widely to promote Beijing's foreign policies around the world, often with incorrect or misleading information.

However, Musk told the forum, "Twitter does not operate in China. I think China does not interfere with the free speech in the U.S."

The billionaire refutes the idea that there’ll be any issue balancing his Tesla interests in China with the future acquisition of Twitter. He added, "China does not attempt to interfere with the free speech of the press in the US, as far as I’m aware."

Twitter's scope

Musk has bold plans to expand the social media platform, as he said that there's a big difference between freedom of speech and freedom of reach. "Ideally I’d like to get like 80% of North America and half the world on Twitter, which means the service needs to be appealing to people. They can’t be harassed," said Musk.

Explaining the idea of speech and reach, he said that the concept is that you can say whatever you want as long as it's not unlawful, but Twitter isn't obligated to share it with a large audience.

Moreover, he'll focus on "driving the product" at Twitter, but he doesn't necessarily plans on becoming the company's CEO.

Musk said he doesn't think there'll be any issue balancing his Tesla interests in China with the future acquisition of Twitter.

Tesla's workforce

At the forum, Musk informed the audience, "Tesla is reducing salaried workforce roughly 10% over the next 3 months or so. We expect to grow our hourly workforce. We grew very fast on the salaried side, grew a little too fast in some areas."

He further explained, "A year from now, I think our headcount will be higher both in salaried and hourly” workers, but for now the headcount reduction will be 3% to 3.5%."

Musk, the world's richest person according to Forbes magazine, is trying to buy Twitter for $44 billion.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jun 21, 2022 01:52 pm
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