Here's how the internet is reacting to Elon Musk buying Twitter
- Elon Musk bought Twitter, and social media users discussed the issue at length.
- He has expressed a desire to make content on Twitter less regulated, exciting conservative users.
Reactions varied, from conservatives who celebrated the move, as Musk is a self-described "free speech absolutist," to people who joked on Reddit that he bought Twitter to stop 19-year-old Jack Sweeney from tweeting about his flights.
"Elon Musk spending $43 billion to stop getting bullied on Twitter when he could've simply been less annoying is insane," one high-profile TikToker tweeted.
Conservatives from President Donald Trump to Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, who were both banned from the platform, have long griped about Twitter and Big Tech in general, saying that it censors right-wing views.
—Rep. Anthony Sabatini (@AnthonySabatini) April 25, 2022
"Elon Musk must be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom," Anthony Sabatini, a state representative from Florida currently running for Congress, tweeted.
UK-based conservative TikToker "Politics Max" made a video last week expressing excitement about the acquisition, and Monica Crowley, former U.S. Department of the Treasury official, wrote, "Suck it, communists."
Some users expressed alarm about increased misinformation and disinformation.
"There are plenty of models for where this site is likely headed. I'm on those sites all day. I cover extremism and lies for a living. You're not gonna like it," tweeted NBC reporter Ben Collins.
In a TikTok posted Sunday satirizing those who were excited about the buy, one person says, "And by free speech do you just mean racism?"
Musk has also said he wants to "authenticate all humans" and thus reduce the number of spam bots on Twitter.
Redditors worried in long discussions about information conglomerates and how Musk could play with the financials of the company. Numerous Clubhouse rooms and Twitter Spaces popped up to discuss the news.
One NFT artist posted a picture of Musk locking Twitter in a golden cage with the caption "riptwitter."
Eat the rich
Musk using nearly $45 billion to buy Twitter, and providing $21 billion in cash, inspired a fair amount of leftist frustration.
—Posting Italian Elon Musk until he sells this site (@lesbiaudrey) April 25, 2022
"I buy a the Twitter for 41 a billion! I don't pay a the taxes!! Oh!!!," Audrey Armstrong, a writer who runs an Twitter account that focuses on criticizing people in Italian parody, posted in a flurry of tweets focused on the Musk deal.
Many directed anger at billionaires writ large and wrote about things they thought Musk could use the money for, including:
- Pay off student loans of everyone in West Virginia several times over, from Appalachian podcasters on Instagram
- Fulfill his promise to end world hunger for $6 billion, from Brian Tyler Cohen, progressive podcaster, on Twitter.
- Cover community college for "every American for five years," said Nina Turner, former Ohio state senator running for Congress on Twitter.
The photo of Musk with Ghislane Maxwell, girlfriend to financier and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, also circulated on Twitter, with people saying they were posting it while they still could.
A Musk spokesperson said in 2019 Maxwell had "inserted" herself into the photo and that Musk did not know it was being taken.
Joking it out
The jokes also came pouring in, many citing Sweeney's jet-tracking Twitter account.
"That's serious asymmetrical warfare. The kid spent $0 and forced Musk to spend $44,000,000,000" Reddit user KingApologist wrote.
Another Reddit user, username niikhil, received props for the following: "The worlds richest man owns Twitter. The Second richest man owns Washington post. They both still cant afford a good barber," likely referring to Jeff Bezos' bald head and Musk's often slightly disheveled appearance.
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