Elon Musk Threatens to Sink Twitter Deal over 'Fake Accounts'
'Twitter is transparently refusing to comply with its obligations'
Tesla CEO Elon Musk is threatening to end his highly anticipated $44 billion buyout of Twitter, accusing the social media giant of failing to comply with his request for data on how many fake accounts exist on the platform.
“Mr. Musk is not required to explain his rationale for requesting the data, nor submit to the new conditions the company has attempted to impose on his contractual right to the requested data,” Musk’s lawyer Mike Ringler said in a letter to Twitter Chief Legal Officer Vijaya Gadde.
“At this point, Mr. Musk believes Twitter is transparently refusing to comply with its obligations under the merger agreement,” Ringler added.
Ringler added that “based on Twitter’s behavior to date,” Musk “believes the company is actively resisting and thwarting his information rights (and the company’s corresponding obligations) under the merger agreement.”
“This is a clear material breach of Twitter’s obligations under the merger agreement and Mr. Musk reserves all rights resulting therefrom, including his right not to consummate the transaction and his right to terminate the merger agreement,” Ringler said.
Last month, Musk said his deal with Twitter “cannot move forward” until the company clarifies the number of bot accounts on the platform.
The SpaceX CEO added that his offer was based on “Twitter’s SEC filings being accurate,” and that he believes the platform could have 20 percent bots “or *much* higher.”
Musk threatening to end his deal with Twitter arrives on the heels of the billionaire saying he plans to cut ten percent of the jobs at his electric carmaker Tesla because he has a “super bad feeling” about the economy.
The company planning to institute a hiring freeze has also caused a 3.5 percent plunge in its stock price in intraday trading.
Last month, Musk’s deal to buy Twitter has exposed bogus accounts that litter the platform, including Joe Biden’s fake followers.
As Neon Nettle reported:
Musk highlighted a plethora of “spam bots” on Twitter, resulting in his purchase being halted as he seeks more information on just how many Twitter accounts are fake.
Meanwhile, an audit of President Joe Biden’s 22.2 million followers on Twitter discovered that about half are fake accounts, Newsweek reported.
The analysis looked at a variety of factors, including location issues, default profile images, and new users.
It found that 49.3 percent of the accounts following Biden — nearly 11 million — are bogus.
Twitter claimed in a quarterly filing that less than 5 percent of its accounts were spam or fake, Reuters reported.