Elon Musk buying Twitter would be a disaster for privacy, warns expert

Privacxy experts and social media researchers have warned that Elon Musk buying Twitter would be a 'disaster' for privacy.

2 minutes & 36 seconds read time

Privacy and social media experts have raised concerns about Elon Musk's attempt to privatize Twitter and its impact on user privacy.

Elon Musk buying Twitter would be a disaster for privacy, warns expert 01

A few days ago, the SpaceX and Tesla CEO put forward an offer of $43 billion to purchase 100% of Twitter's stock and convert the second largest social media platform into a privatized company. To recap past events, Musk originally purchased a 9.2% stake in Twitter in early April, causing Twitter's stock price to rise by 25% following Musk's purchase.

In a letter included in the SEC filing, Musk writes that if his offer isn't accepted, he will have to reconsider his position as a shareholder, which could be translated to "If you don't accept my offer, I will sell my position which may or may not cause Twitter's overall stock price to fall suddenly fall back to where it was before I purchased a position."

In the event of Twitter being handed over to Musk, the Tesla CEO would move to make the platform open-source, as he believes it would lead to having a platform that is trusted by the public, which "is extremely important to the future of civilization", as explained by Musk during a TED Talk hours after he put forward the offer for Twitter. Furthermore, Musk said that "Twitter has extraordinary potential. I will unlock it."

Following Musk's offer to privatize Twitter, privacy and social media experts have raised alarms at the prospect of an individual having control over a platform that can influence real-world events and public opinion. Shoshana Zuboff, author of "The Age of Surveillance", a former Harvard professor and social psychologist, said to The Washington Post that one person having the power of Twitter would be "incompatible with democracy". Adding, "There are simply no checks and balances from any internal or external force."

Zuboff continued and said that if Musk owned Twitter, he would have an amount of user data "that cannot be compared to anything that has ever existed, and allows intervention into the integrity of individual behavior and also the integrity of collective behavior. This is a disaster, and it's not only about Elon Musk, but he kind of puts it on steroids."

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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