Elon Musk says he purchased Twitter to “benefit humanity” and doesn’t want it to become into a “free-for-all hellscape” where anyone can say anything without repercussions.
A day before Musk’s deadline for concluding his $44 billion bid to buy the social media business and take it private, he posted a message to advertisers on Twitter on Thursday.
Musk wrote in an unusually lengthy message for the billionaire Tesla CEO who typically expresses his thoughts in one-line tweets, “The reason I acquired Twitter is that it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated healthily, without resorting to violence.”
“There is now a great danger that social media will split into far right-wing and far left-wing echo chambers that fuel further hatred and split our society,” he continued.
The statement underscores worries from advertisers, Twitter’s primary revenue source, that Musk’s intentions to promote free speech by reducing content moderation will unleash a wave of online toxicity and drive people away.
Musk said Thursday that he wants Twitter to be “the most respected advertising platform in the world,” adding that it should be “warm and friendly to all” and provide users the option of having the desired experience.
The Delaware Chancery Court mandated the Friday deadline for the transaction’s completion in early October.
The latest development in a protracted dispute began when Tesla CEO Elon Musk agreed to buy Twitter in April but later tried to back out, prompting Twitter to sue Musk to force him to complete the transaction.
The next step might be a November trial, which is expected to result in a judge compelling Musk to finalize the deal if the two parties fail to reach the Friday deadline.
Musk, who visited Twitter’s San Francisco offices on Wednesday and changed his Twitter handle to “Chief Twit,” has indicated that the acquisition will close by Friday.
In addition, the New York Stock Exchange informed investors overnight that it would halt trading in Twitter shares before Friday’s opening bell, anticipating Musk’s plan to take the firm private.