The hottest tech news of the last week should be Elon Musk's battle with Twitter.
- 4/4: It had been disclosed that Elon Musk bought more than 9% of Twitter stocks, which made him the largest individual shareholder. By the end of the day, the board of Twitter invited him as a board member on the condition that he would not own more than 14.9% of the company's stock.
- 4/5: Musk re-classified himself as an active investor, indicating that he would accept a board seat.
- 4/9: Musk rejected the board seat.
- 4/10: Twitter CEO Agrawal made his rejection public.
- 4/14: Musk offers to buy the whole company at $43B ($54.20 per share).
- 4/15: Twitter board took the 'poison pill,' which enables existing shareholders to buy additional shares at a discount if any shareholder exceeds 15% of the company's stocks.
So, now what? He said he secured $46.5B in funding. Some say that Musk would remain a good adviser because historically, a hostile tech takeover is not a tech-industry culture: because it is too devastating - the precious talents could leave the company. But I don't think so. I believe he only wants the platform itself; he wouldn't mind any talent loss as he would believe he could easily top them up.
I have a complicated feeling about it. I also agree that Twitter (not only Twitter but also all social networks) has been kept failing to build a better world and keep democracy. It looks stuck, clogged, and sometimes I also think some external stimulus might make some way out. However, he would not be the one. He said, "Free speech is essential to a functioning democracy," and he seemed to think Twitter should 'rigorously adhere' to it. But free speech is not an end but a method; it is essential to democracy because it makes society open and transparent and helps us find a better solution. If Twitter has failed in something: they boosted toxic ideas by giving them a megaphone and prioritizing popularity only, and they had no ideas to make the evil accountable; hiding or blocking some Tweets is not a solution.
Credible journalism was made by its accountability. Yes, freedom of speech is essential, but what we really need is a method to make them accountable. We might need The One. However, I can hardly think that it would be the one who has had an interest only in "egoizing" himself on the platform.