During an event yesterday, software billionaire Bill Gates warned that incoming owner Elon Musk can make Twitter worse. He said that Musk’s plans to change twitter remain unclear. At the same time, Gates also raised worries about the use of social media to spread misinformation.
Gates: Elon Musk Could Make Twitter Worse
The billionaire founder of Microsoft appeared at the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Summit last Wednesday. Initially, Gates heaped praise on Musk, saying his track records at Tesla and SpaceX are good examples of his leadership. He added that Musk did a great job of assembling top engineers at both companies. “I kind of doubt that will happen this time, but we should have an open mind and never underestimate Elon,” he remarked.
When asked about Musk’s recent purchase of Twitter for $44 billion, Gates shifted. He warned that the outspoken billionaire could make Twitter worse. At present, it remains unclear how Musk plans to change Twitter once he takes over. Gates also raised concerns about the spread of misinformation on social platforms such as Twitter.
Musk Accused Gates of Shorting Tesla Stock
The comments came a month after Musk accused Gates of shorting Tesla stock. During the time, Musk said he believes that Gates has sold short $500 million of Tesla shares. He said that Gates bet that the stock will fall at the time. Then, Musk mocked Gates' bodily girth using a photo, an emoji, and a crude comment. However, Gates responded by saying that insults didn’t bother him.
Instead, Gates questioned Musk’s objective in buying Twitter as he suggested that Musk might make Twitter worse. He also asked if the world’s richest person’s drive to promote free speech makes sense. “How does he feel about something that says ‘vaccines kill people’ or that ’Bill Gates is tracking people’? What are his goals for what it ends up being? Does that match this idea of less extreme falsehoods spreading so quickly weird conspiracy theories? Does he share that goal or not?” Gates said.
In particular, Gates focused on vaccines as an example of spreading misinformation in social media. A popular myth still circulating on social media is that Gates is using COVID vaccines to implant 5G chips on unsuspecting people. “That’s so unexpected and almost so bizarre,” Gates said. “Now that I’m back in the physical world … people come up and yell and protest.”
In addition, Gates said that it’s dangerous when people “cast out” tools used to save people’s lives. He also said that he believes owners of social media platforms should help ensure the effective spread of truth. “When you don’t have trusted leaders speaking out about vaccines, it’s pretty hard for the platform to work against that. So I think we have a leadership problem and we have a platform problem,” he noted.
Can Elon Musk Make Twitter Worse?
Meanwhile, Musk nor his representatives have yet to react to Gates’s comments during the Wall Street Journal event. However, Musk regularly hints via random tweets various suggestions on how to improve the social platform. Last Tuesday, Musk sent a random tweet suggesting that Twitter might start charging companies and institutions a slight fee. “Ultimately, the downfall of the Freemasons was giving away their stonecutting services for nothing.Twitter will always be free for casual users, but maybe a slight cost for commercial/government users,” he said.
Do you agree with Bill Gates that Elon Musk might make Twitter worse? If yes, how can Elon Musk make the social media platform do so?
Let us know what you think of Bill Gates, social media, and Elon Musk. Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
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