Elon Musk, a self-proclaimed alien and the richest business person in the world, recently launched a $43 billion bid to purchase Twitter at $54.20 (nice) a share! Claiming that Twitter is the town square for modern day global discourse, Elon seeks to bolster democratic values through limiting what some perceive as increased censorship on the platform.
In March, Musk tweeted a poll asking whether Twitter is succeeding in its mission to protect free speech, and the result of over 2 million votes was a resounding “no.” Clearly something is causing users to worry about their ability to speak freely.
Many of the complaints come from political conservatives who feel that their views are deliberately being stifled. Most notably, the ban on former President Trump and the silencing of the now-accepted Hunter Biden laptop story are issues that have conservatives and free-speech advocates saying “enough is enough.”
People are divided on whether “supervillain” billionaires should be in control of major media channels. Such control is nothing new, as Jeff Bezos owns the Washington Post and Rupert Murdoch owns the Wall Street Journal. The question is whether Elon will be a benevolent billionaire owner, and the answer seems to be yes. His intention is to promote democracy through freedom rather than content curation.
While there are risks of bad actors abusing their freedom, those risks are a cost democratic nations are willing to pay to preserve their sacred freedom of speech.