Twitter takeover: Elon Musk’s latest endeavor into the social media world

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Screenshot from Twitter

Elon Musk uses Twitter as a platform to boost his agenda after his purchase of the app.

Ava Hahn, P.V. Only Editor

Social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are environments where free speech is encouraged. Elon Musk, the richest man in the world, has taken Twitter on as one of his latest business ventures. His presence has trended on the platform in the past regarding his controversial tweets. 

His reason for the big purchase? Freedom of speech. Musk hopes that his new influence in the company will allow for an expansion on the current ability to speak freely on Twitter. Recently, there has been an effort towards removing hate speech on social media, and there is fear that Musk’s take over will reverse those efforts. Musk stated, “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated.”

As a platform, Twitter is already a place where most speech is tolerated, but it is not enough for some people. Musk is aiming to create an environment where people have the ability to post and say whatever is on their mind with no chance of consequence. Although free speech may sound like a positive, it can quickly escalate into an unhealthy and unsafe environment. Twitter’s current guidelines work against users who spread hate, facilitate sex trafficing, instigate terrorism and more. 

Musk is moving in a much different direction than what has been seen in the past. He is aiming to move towards a reinvented, premium Twitter that would remove ads and allow Dogecoin, a form of cryptocurrency, as a method of payment. He also wants to open up Twitter’s algorithm to the public and create an edit button.

Senior Hayden Libby is an avid user of Twitter. He stated, “Elon Musk buying Twitter is a very big thing in my opinion. Hundreds if not thousands of people have been silenced or censored on Twitter for their opinions.” Although there seems to be debate on whether or not the takeover is a positive change, many users believe the freedom will be a refreshing start. 

The founders of Twitter were not exactly quick to jump on the sell to Musk, but his powerful position made it difficult for them to deny such a lucrative offer. Libby offered his perspective on this. “I believe Twitter would have fallen apart had Musk pulled out his stock. Twitter seemed to only have one option and that was to sell to Musk,” he said.

Musk’s billion-dollar buyout is no less than a controversy among users. Many are wondering what the outcome of the buyout will be. Senior Elsa Gilbeck stated, “I think a billionaire buying the platform is an interesting prospect, as he used to get in trouble for some of the things he would post and now he can’t because of his ownership. “He believes there needs to be more free speech, but I believe the guidelines on Twitter allow for enough freedom.” 

Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover is one of the biggest moves in the world of media in the last few years. His power as one of the richest people in the world collaborating with an extremely influential form of media could have major implications. His Twitter buyout will inevitably have long term effects on the platform that ripple worldwide with his potential rollback of Twitter’s protective guidelines.