Elon Musk decided it was impossible to verify the number of bot accounts on Twitter, although the social media network shared their estimates with him, how they arrived at those estimates, and provided his team with a “firehose of user data that is typically sold to corporate customers.
In case you were wondering if the Tesla and SpaceX kingpin would ever follow through on his offer to buy the microblogging website, sources have Told The Washington Post that the deal is “seriously threatened” because of these nebulous robot numbers.
In light of the number of fake accounts that cannot be accurately determined, despite Twitter’s extensive efforts to provide evidence, the source told WaPo that Musk’s team should “take potentially drastic action,” although this “drastic action” may be is unknown.
Observers have long speculated that the bot’s numbers are just an excuse for Musk to bail out the deal. Certainly, since the billionaire announced his intention to buy Twitter in April, the company’s share price has fallen, which means that the announced price of $44 billion is already way too high. The drama also had a ripple effect on Tesla’s value.
But leaving would not be so easy. Musk is committed to the deal unless something serious happens to Twitter’s business, and the bot issue is believed to be ineligible. As Twitter continues to take the damage from the protracted negotiations, it’s in the company’s interest to make sure the deals are completed as well. And if Musk rushes to the altar, he’ll have to pay the billion-dollar severance fee.
Twitter’s only comment regarding the process was: “Twitter has and will continue to cooperatively share information with Mr. Musk to complete the transaction pursuant to the terms of the merger agreement. We believe this agreement is in the best interest of all shareholders. . We intend to complete the transaction and implement the merger agreement at the agreed price and terms.”
For a more tangible sense of the difficulties the transaction has caused Twitter, the company announced yesterday that it had laid off 30% of its recruiting team.
Twitter has frozen hiring since May under the shadow of Musk’s takeover and shuffled the management team in a bid to cut costs. These layoffs are limited to the talent acquisition unit, affecting less than 100 people, the the wall street journal said.
Given that hiring freezes aren’t unusual during business acquisitions, it makes sense that Twitter wants to ensure that hiring is done efficiently and responsibly, as a spokesperson for Twitter. ®