Elon Musk’s tweet may have landed him in legal trouble again. As you may recall, the Tesla and SpaceX executive tweeted on Friday that his deal to buy Twitter was “temporarily suspended” after the company revealed that fake accounts and spam accounted for less than 5% of its monetizable daily active users in the first quarter of 2022.
After his tweet prompted Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal to say the company was “prepared for all scenarios”, Musk declared his team would test “a random sample of 100 followers” to verify Twitter’s numbers. According to the billionaire, one of the answers he gave to a question about his methodology prompted a response from Twitter’s legal team.
“I chose 100 as the number of samples because that’s what Twitter uses to calculate <5% fake/spam/duplicates," he said. mentioned in the allegedly offensive tweet. “Twitter’s legal department just called to complain that they violated their NDA by disclosing that the bot verification sample size is 100,” Musk later said. mentioned of his actions.
Twitter declined to comment on Musk’s tweets.
In another twist on Musk’s bid to buy Twitter, he also took aim at the platform’s algorithmic feed. “You are being manipulated by the algorithm in a way that you don’t realize,” he said. mentioned.
The post caught the attention of former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. “It was designed simply to save you time when you’re away from [the] app for a while,” Dorsey says Musk. “Pulling to refresh is also like reversing the chron.”
Dorsey then responded to someone who said Twitter’s algorithmic feed was “definitely” designed to be manipulated. “No, it was not designed to be manipulated. It was designed to catch you up and work on what you’re getting into,” Dorsey said. “It can certainly have unintended consequences.”
Musk later appeared to walk back his comment. “I’m not suggesting any malice in the algorithm, but rather that it tries to guess what you might want to read and in doing so inadvertently manipulates/amplifies your views without you realizing it,” he said.
If anything came of Musk’s actions, it wouldn’t be the first time one of his tweets landed him in legal trouble. In 2018, his now infamous “Funding Secured” tweet caught the attention of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, leading to a $40 million settlement with the agency he is now trying to end.
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