Elon Musk says he’s buying Twitter to ‘help humanity’, not ‘make more money’ | Science and technology news
Elon Musk has said he’s buying Twitter to “try to help humanity.”
The billionaire tweeted a statement explaining his reasons for buying the social media site and said he believes it is “important for the future of civilization to have a shared digital city square.”
Mr Musks long running bid to buy Twitter is said to be in the final phase.
The tycoon arrived at the company’s headquarters in San Francisco yesterday carry a sink and changed his bio to “Chief Twit” on the site.
In the statement, he said most of the speculation about his motivation for acquiring the US tech company had been “wrong” and he feared social media would fragment into “far-right and far-left echo chambers.”
He said: “In the relentless pursuit of clicks, many of the traditional media have fueled and catered to these polarized extremes, believing it will make money but miss the opportunity for dialogue in the process.
“That’s 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 and help the humanity I love. And I do so with humility, recognizing that failure in pursuit of that goal, despite our best efforts, is a very real possibility.”
To reassure advertisers, the Tesla owner went on to say that Twitter cannot become a “free hellscape where anything can be said without consequences,” adding that he wants to make sure users can share their experiences with the could tailor website according to their preferences in future.
The electric car and space entrepreneur has pledged $46.5bn (£40.15bn) in equity and debt financing to acquire Twitter, bringing the asking price and closing costs of $44bn (37, £96 billion).
Morgan Stanley and Bank of America, as well as equity investors including American businessman Larry Ellison and Prince Alwaleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia, are also participating in the transaction.
Elon Musk’s Twitter deal – what’s going on, how did we get here and what’s next?
The somewhat bumpy acquisition has been rumbling since April, when Musk first offered to buy the company after raising concerns about Twitter’s commitment to free speech.
On October 4, he said he would go ahead with the full offer he made six months ago, before Twitter threatened legal action against him for trying to go out of business.
He had previously argued Twitter wasn’t upfront about what he described as the company’s problem with fake accounts, which he called “spam bots.”