Elon Musk, the eccentric multibillionaire, space pioneer, chief engineer and icon of innovation, can now add one more title to his resume in case he’s ever in need of fulltime employment: CEO of Twitter.
After months of back and forth with Twitter’s board of directors, including lawsuits, Musk has officially purchased “the Bird,” as he has called it.
“The bird is freed,” Musk tweeted late on Thursday. Earlier in the day, Musk posted a video to Twitter of him entering the platform’s headquarters in San Francisco, California.
Entering Twitter HQ – let that sink in! pic.twitter.com/D68z4K2wq7
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 26, 2022
“A beautiful thing about Twitter is how it empowers citizen journalism – people are able to disseminate news without an establishment bias,” Musk opined.
The CEO of Tesla had first offered to purchase Twitter back in April for $44 billion in cash, which Twitter’s board accepted. In July, Musk said that he wanted to back out of his offer, citing the amount of spam and false accounts on the platform, which he said he was misled about.
Twitter’s board then sued Musk to force him to purchase the company. Musk tried to use the lawsuit to negotiate a discount, an effort that proved unsuccessful. Then, earlier this month, Musk reconsidered and offered to purchase Twitter for the amount he originally offered, in exchange for Twitter dropping its lawsuit against him.
On October 27, Musk’s deal to purchase Twitter for $44 billion officially closed.
One of Musk’s first actions was to begin a bit of house cleaning.
After taking the reins, Musk immediately fired the company’s CEO Parag Agrawal, CFO Ned Segal, top policy executive Vijaya Gadde – who made the decision to permanently ban former President Donald J. Trump – and Twitter’s general counsel Sean Edgett.
Musk also wrote a letter to the company’s advertisers, which he posted to Twitter, laying out why he purchased the social media giant.
“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,” he wrote. “Twitter obviously cannot become a free-for-all hellscape … our platform must be warm and welcoming to all.”
One Twitter user, Justin Hart, has compiled a list of 100 accounts for Musk to review. These accounts were either currently banned or have been temporarily suspended in the past and are (or were) on their way to a complete ban.
The names included the accounts of President Trump, former White House Advisor Scott Atlas, inventor of mRNA technology Dr. Robert Malone, journalist Emerald Robinson, left-wing commentator Naomi Wolf, and journalist Alex Berenson among others.
President Trump has since said that he will not be returning to Twitter, favoring instead to remain on his new social media platform, Truth Social.
“Twitter will be forming a content moderation council with widely diverse viewpoints,” Musk announced on Friday. “No major content decisions or account reinstatements will happen before that council convenes.”
It’s quite clear that Musk’s takeover of Twitter is a victory for free speech. Under the Musk regime, it’s far more likely that spam accounts and bots will be suppressed, rather than real conservative voices.
Still, the news brings reason for caution. Musk is one of the world’s largest supporters of transhumanism – or the modern movement to enhance human beings with technological capabilities.
One of the foremost promoters of transhumanism, Yuval Harari, is an Israeli professor and author of the book Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow, which is Latin for “Human God.” Harari, a contributor to the World Economic Forum, argues in his book that in the 21st century, because of technological advances, human beings will attain “God like” powers and “immortality.”
As a thought experiment, consider who in Scripture uttered the words, “You will be like God” (Genesis 3:5 ESV).
Musk is a cofounder of Neuralink, which is a technology company developing implantable brain-machine interfaces, or what Fortune magazine calls a “brain chip.”
While free speech is very important, and far more likely to flourish now that Musk owns Twitter, we should also consider whether it’s a net positive for a promoter of transhumanism to have access to the amount of personal information and data that Twitter undoubtedly has on millions of people.
What do you think of Musk’s move?
Photo from Shutterstock.