Elon Musk Twitter Deal CEO Timeline Tweet Account Shares Meme Verification Blue Tick Price

Elon Musk Twitter Deal CEO Timeline Tweet Account Shares Meme Verification Blue Tick Price

Elon Musk has finally acquired Twitter. After months of promises and posts on the microblogging platform itself, along with a heavily publicised U-turn, the billionaire entrepreneur has now added Twitter as one of the many feathers on his cap, including the likes of spacefaring firm SpaceX and EV manufacturer Tesla. As the deal, worth a whopping $44 billion, finally became fruitful on October 28 as Musk tweeted that the “bird is freed”, here’s a quick look at the timeline of Musk’s Twitter takeover.

December 21, 2017: ‘How much is it?’

While most of the official announcements were made this year, the earliest record of Musk expressing interest in Twitter could be traced back to 2017. While the original tweet isn’t there anymore, several screenshots of the same have been doing rounds on social media.

On December 21, Musk posted, “I love Twitter”. To this, Business Insider editor Dave Smith posted (perhaps jokingly), “You should buy it then”. Musk offered a simple response, “How much is it?”

Was Musk joking at the time? Or was he serious? Given Musk’s usually eccentric online persona, it’s hard to say for certain.

March 25, 2022: ‘The consequences of this poll will be important’

Fast-forward to nearly five years later, when the Tesla CEO quietly acquired a 9.2 percent stake in Twitter on March 14. On March 25, Musk posted a poll on Twitter, asking if users believe that Twitter rigorously adheres to the principle of free speech. 

He tweeted on the same thread, “The consequences of this poll will be important. Please vote carefully.”

April 4-5, 2022: ‘Oh hi lol’

On April 4, Musk is revealed as the largest shareholder of Twitter in a filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). To this, Musk offers this tweet in his signature style:

The day after, former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted that Musk will be joining the Twitter board. “He cares deeply about our world and Twitter’s role in it,” Dorsey wrote. 

April 11, 2022: ‘Is Twitter dying?’

Musk takes a U-turn and decides not to join the Twitter board. While now-former Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal made the announcement via a tweet, he did say that the company will remain open to Musk’s input. 

While Musk’s decision led to heavy speculations around a hostile takeover, he shared some stats that showed that the top 10 most followed accounts on Twitter don’t really post content as regularly as one may think. “Is Twitter dying?” Musk asked. 

April 14, 2022: ‘I made an offer’

Proving the speculations to be true, Musk officially launched his hostile takeover of Twitter in a $44-billion deal. He also said he will try to keep as many shareholders as “allowed by law”.

April 22, 2022: ‘We will defeat the spam bots or die trying’

After unveiling a $46.5-billion financing package to fund his bid for Twitter, as reported by the Financial Times, Musk revealed his primary plans after he takes over — defeat spam bots and authenticate real humans.

April 26, 2022: ‘Yes!!!’

A day after Twitter announced that it accepts Musk’s takeover offer, Musk posts this to reinforce his stand on free speech.

April 29, 2022: ‘No further TSLA sales planned after today’

In order to bolster his cash position ahead of the takeover, Musk sold off Tesla stock worth $8.5 billion and said that no further sales were planned.

May 6, 2022: ‘All managers in a technical area must be technically excellent’

In a tweet, Musk further explained his plans for the company. He said if the Twitter deal goes through, the platform “will be super focused on hardcore software engineering, design, infosec & server hardware,” adding that “Managers in software must write great software or it’s like being a cavalry captain who can’t ride a horse.”

May 13, 2022: ‘Twitter deal temporarily on hold’

Following news of hiring freeze and executive departures at Twitter, Musk on May 13 said that the deal has been put on hold for the time being “pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5 percent of users”.

May 17, 2022: ‘This deal cannot move forward until he does’

Publicly calling out Agrawal for the first time, Musk said that the then-CEO “refused” to show proof of spam accounts on the platform is less than 5 percent. 

On July 8, Musk says he is backing out of the deal, without putting out a tweet this time around. On July 12, Musk was sued by Twitter in order to hold him accountable to his contractual obligations.

August 23, 2022: ‘Give a little whistle’

Adding more strength to Musk’s case in the lawsuit, former Twitter security chief Peiter ‘Mudge’ Zatko turned whistleblower, alleging that the platform has indeed been deceiving the public on bots and security policies. 

Zatko would go on to testify on September 13, discussing allegations of “widespread security failures” at the company. Zatko said that Twitter preferred “profits over security”, alleging that the company’s technology was over a decade behind industry standards. 

October 4, 2022: ‘Buying Twitter is an accelerant’

In yet another U-turn, Musk claimed that the Twitter deal is apparently still on and that its acquisition will help him create X, “the everything app”.

October 13, 2022: ‘Please buy my perfume’

In his unique way of doing things, Musk said that he has launched a new perfume called “Burnt Hair” and requested everyone to buy his perfume, so that he “can buy Twitter”.

October 27, 2022: ‘Entering Twitter HQ’

Soon after changing his Twitter bio to “Chief Twit”, Musk visited the Twitter headquarters in San Francisco, California, US. He carried a sink with him, perhaps to let his presence “sink in”.

October 27, 2022: ‘Dear Twitter advertisers’

In a bid to reassure advertisers on Twitter, Musk says that after his acquisition, it will not become a “free-for-all”.

October 28, 2022: ‘The bird is freed’

Musk confirms that the deal has finally been completed. 

He also added that Twitter will now form a content moderation council “with widely diverse viewpoints”. Musk said, “No major content decisions or account reinstatements will happen before that council convenes.”

October 31, 2022: ‘Verification process is being revamped right now’

US-based investor and venture capital firm Andreesen Horowitz (a16z) partner Sriram Krishnan tweeted that he is “helping out” Musk with Twitter temporarily. To this, spaceflight photographer John Kraus asked, “Any chance in helping with verification?” as he got denied several times despite having a large number of followers (138,000). 

To this, Musk tweeted that Twitter’s verification process is being “revamped”.

This tweet has been followed by several media reports, based on Twitter’s internal correspondence, suggesting that Twitter will charge users $19.99 per month for its Twitter Blue subscribers, instead of the earlier price of $4.99. Under the plan, verified users would have 90 days to subscribe or lose the blue-tick badge beside their profile name.

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