Facebook whistleblower is optimistic about Elon Musk's Twitter takeover and says Musk can take feedback better than Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook whistleblower is optimistic about Elon Musk's Twitter takeover and says Musk can take feedback better than Mark Zuckerberg
Elon Musk (left) and Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen.REUTERS/Montinique Monroe/REUTERS/Joe Skipper/File Photo
  • A Facebook whistleblower told Fox Business she's "cautiously optimistic" about Elon Musk's Twitter takeover.
  • Elizabeth Haugen said taking Twitter private could allow Musk to focus on safety changes.

Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, who leaked a trove of Facebook documents late last year, told Fox Business she was "cautiously optimistic" about Elon Musk's takeover of Twitter.

Haugen testified before the US Congress in October last year saying Facebook, which has since changed its name to Meta, consistently prioritized profit and engagement over user safety.

Musk's plans to take Twitter private could gives him the chance to change up the company's business model in a way that prioritizes user safety without pressure to generate profit for shareholders, Haugen told Fox Business.

"I think there's a huge opportunity here for Elon to really demonstrate that there's another way forward," she told the outlet.

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Haugen contrasted Musk with Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, saying she thinks Musk is better able to take hard feedback and make meaningful changes.

Haugen told Fox Business that Zuckerberg has "surrounded himself with people who tell him what he wants to hear."


Musk has said he wants to place a greater emphasis on "free speech" at Twitter, meaning he could loosen the company's rules on what content stays on the platform. Experts told Insider this could lead to an increase in the amount of hate speech and disinformation on the platform.

In her Fox Business interview, Haugen also said that the "number one" thing Musk can do to improve Twitter is "institute real transparency."

Musk has said he wants to open source Twitter's algorithm, which will make it more transparent to people outside the company — but taking Twitter private will also mean its business will be less open to public scrutiny.

It's not entirely clear yet what exact changes Musk will make to Twitter, as his deal to buy the company for $44 billion still has to pass shareholder and regulatory approval. The deal is expected to close in October this year.

Ahead of making his offer to buy Twitter, Musk floated the idea of removing ads for subscribers to the company's premium service Twitter Blue in a tweet. The tweet has since been deleted.