After much drama and difficulty, the Musk-Twitter takeover appears to be done and dusted. Signaling the $44 billion deal had finally gone through, the multi-billionaire tweeted: “the bird is freed” late on Thursday night.
Musk didn’t take long to start making big changes. The ink must have barely been dry on the contract before he set about purging many of the social media platform’s top bosses. Within hours of the takeover, he fired Chief Executive Parag Agrawal, Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal, and legal affairs & policy chief Vijaya Gadde, according to Reuters.
Agrawal and Segal were reportedly in Twitter's headquarters in San Francisco when the deal closed and were escorted out of the building.
It’s clear that Musk is looking to take Twitter in a new direction by removing the company's top figures, but it’s also notable that he’s previously not seen eye-to-eye with the upper management for some time.
Musk was highly critical of Gadde for what he perceived as her role in the decision to block the New York Post Twitter account after they published a controversial story about Hunter Biden's laptop in the run-up to the 2020 United States presidential election.
“Suspending the Twitter account of a major news organization for publishing a truthful story was obviously incredibly inappropriate,” Musk tweeted in April 2022.
She was also said to have played a significant role in suspending former President Donald Trump's Twitter account. There has been some speculation that Twitter is reviewing their policy on permanent bans, which could potentially see the return of Donald’s pride-and-joy Twitter account.
Gadde’s removal seems to be in line with Musk’s recent statement on his vision for the company. On October 27, Musk indicated that he was looking to revamp Twitter by encouraging debate, a diversity of views, and "free speech."
“The reason I acquired Twitter is because it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner,” he said in a tweet.
"There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society," he added.
Many are wondering how this paradigm shift will impact the platform. Following news of the deal closing, “RIP Twitter” started trending. While many were using the hashtag to announce they were leaving the platform, many more were optimistic about what the future had in store for the beloved bird app.