LTwitter shareholders on Tuesday approved the agreement to buy the platform from Elon Musk for 44 billion dollars, a commitment to which the multi-billionaire terminated unilaterally, accusing the company of having lied to him. The vote consolidates the position of the social network one month before the opening of the lawsuit it launched against Elon Musk to force him to honor his commitment.
Twitter had called its shareholders for a “special meeting” by videoconference, but the context of the vote has changed dramatically since the end of April, when the group’s board of directors and Elon Musk signed a contract to buy Twitter at 54.20. dollars per share. Since then, the boss of Tesla and SpaceX has multiplied the accusations against his favorite platform, which he once wanted to make a public place essential to democracy. On July 8, he declared that he was abandoning the operation, on the grounds that the San Francisco-based company had allegedly lied about the proportion of automated and spam accounts among its users.
Tuesday’s poll came shortly after a US Senate hearing for Peiter Zatko, ex-Twitter security chief turned whistleblower. “Twitter’s management is deceiving elected officials, regulators and even its own board of directors,” said the cybersecurity expert, better known by his pseudonym, Mudge. As head of security for the platform from his recruitment at the end of 2020 until his dismissal last January, he claims to have discovered serious vulnerabilities and says he tried to alert management, in vain. “They don’t know what data they have, where it is, where it comes from and therefore, obviously, they cannot protect it,” said Peiter Zatko during his opening remarks before the Judiciary Committee.
Elon Musk prepares the popcorn
The 51-year-old computer scientist believes that the group’s senior officials “do not have the skills to understand the extent of the problem”. “Above all, he asserted, their executive bonuses encourage them to put profits before safety”. At the end of August, the revelation by the press of the report which he had submitted to the American authorities, at the beginning of July, had the effect of a bomb.Twitter rejected these allegations, but they fell at the right time for Elon Musk, who wants use it to justify its abandonment of the takeover project.
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Especially since Peiter Zatko directly mentions in his report the questions asked by the boss of Tesla on automated Twitter accounts. Elon Musk has been hammering for months that the proportion of fake accounts and spam, in his opinion, far exceeds the 5% estimated by Twitter management. “I did not make my whistleblower disclosures out of malice or to harm Twitter,” Mudge assured senators on Tuesday. “Given the real damage to users and national security, I decided it was necessary to take the personal and professional risk, for me and my family, to raise the alarm,” he explained. . For his part, Elon Musk tweeted a popcorn-shaped emoji, suggesting that he was following the audition with relish.