Does it matter if Elon Musk buys Twitter?

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The future of Twitter has rarely been as uncertain as it is now. Elon Musk who has been circling most social networks – and possibly one of the most toxic – for weeks and has launched a $46 billion (€42 billion) hostile takeover bid.

To fund the deal – one of the largest of its kind in US corporate history – he has said he will use borrowings of $25.5 billion on top of $21 billion of equity in Tesla, the car company he founded.

If the deal is done, Musk will become a social media baron with the power to control what he has defined as the world’s “de facto public town square”.

The Twitter board wants none of it.

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Having invited him to join them after it emerged that he had quietly secured a 9 per cent stake in the company – an invitation that was rejected – it has since launched a “poison pill” to frustrate a hostile takeover by making it highly uneconomical for anyone to buy more than 15 per cent of Twitter stock in the open market.

But what does Musk want with Twitter and what might he do if and when he takes over?

My colleague Laura Slattery has been charting the rollercoaster ride that is Twitter from the cheery blue fail whale of times past to the toxicity of the Trump era and into the present day.

She talks to In the News about what the social media platform once was, what it is now and what it might become in the future.

Conor Pope

Conor Pope

Conor Pope is Consumer Affairs Correspondent, Pricewatch Editor and cohost of the In the News podcast