Number of fake accounts jeopardizes Musk’s purchase of Twitter

Billionaire Elon Musk, who has pledged to weed out ‘spam bots’ from Twitter, has now argued via the social network that these automated accounts may exist in greater numbers than expected, rendering the purchase contract unworkable. .

The recent U-turn by the world’s richest man to buy the social network has been controversial and, some analysts say, meaningless, as well as being an attempt to lower Twitter’s value or renegotiate it. deal which experts say is becoming increasingly expensive for the CEO of You’re here.

While such tough tactics are not uncommon in corporate mergers, how it happens, becoming a hot topic via the same platform as Elon Musk intends to acquire, is virtually unprecedented, reports the Associated Press (AP).

the founder of You’re here recently pushed investors to the limit by announcing that he was temporarily suspending the acquisition of the platform – which he had announced for nearly $ 44 billion -, only to rectify this information shortly afterwards and indicate that he remained committed to its acquisition .

“That’s the strategy you’re trying to use to get away from [do negócio] or get a lower price,” said Brian Quinn, associate professor of law at Boston College.

Musk took to Twitter on Tuesday to say that the deal reached to buy the company cannot “move forward” unless the social network publicly shows that less than 5% of accounts on this platform are fake or “fake spam”.

Experts say Muks cannot unilaterally suspend the deal, although that hasn’t stopped the billionaire from acting like he can.

If he backs out of the deal, he could be ordered to pay a $1 trillion royalty.

Monday, Elon Musk responded directly, with sarcasm, to messages from the Twitter CEO regarding the fake accounts.

Parag Agrawal pointed out, in his message, that the social network suspends more than half a million “spam” accounts every day “before users can even see them”.

“The toughest challenge is that many accounts that look superficially fake are actually real people. And some of the fake accounts that are actually the most dangerous and hurt our users the most can look completely legitimate” , he added.

According to Agrawal, this is why the team of Twitter cannot identify all fake profiles.

“We measure this internally. And each quarter, we estimate that less than 5% of the monetizable daily active users (mDAU) in the quarter are spam accounts,” he noted.

However, the CEO indicated that “actual internal estimates for the last four quarters were well below 5%”.

But Elon Musk evoked, this Tuesday, in his ‘Twitte’, the existence of “20% of fake / spam accounts”, four times more than what Twitter claims.

Musk warned that the number could be much higher and that his offer to buy was based on the accuracy of the social network’s records.

For Brian Quinn, this kind of language from the founder of You’re here has no sense.

“The disclosures you seek are the same that the company has filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over an extended period of time,” he said.

Elon Musk suggested this Monday, for the first time, at a technology conference in Miamiwho would like to pay less for the purchase of Twitter and that a viable agreement at a lower price was not excluded.

It was also during the All In Summit that Musk estimated that at least 20% of the 229 million Twitter accounts are “spam” “bots”, noting that the percentage is at the lower end of his assessment.

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