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BREAKING: Elon Musk puts Twitter deal on hold pending audit of 'spam/fake accounts'; Update: Musk says 'Still committed to acquisition'


Musk added this tweet at 7:50 a.m.:


Elon Musk tweeted this morning that he’s put his purchase of Twitter on hold pending an audit of “spam/fake account” on the site.


He tweeted:

“Twitter deal temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users.”

It appears a filing to the SEC by Twitter prompted the move. From Reuters:

Twitter Inc(TWTR.N)estimated in a filing on Monday that false or spam accounts represented fewer than 5% of its monetizable daily active users during the first quarter.

The social media company had 229 million users who were served advertising in the first quarter. read more

The disclosure came days after Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) Chief Executive Elon Musk, who has inked a deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion, tweeted that one of his priorities would be to remove “spam bots” from the platform.

They theory here is Musk can walk away if the number of these fake accounts is higher than what Twitter is reporting:


A quick audit of Musk’s own account shows a significant amount of fake followers, so Musk has reason to challenge Twitter’s assertion:

So, is he having second thoughts?

According to this report, his “offer to buy Twitter was not contingent on customary due diligence”:


The market — including Tesla — is down big since Musk made his offer, so there’s a chance this is a negotiating tactic to just get a better price, too:

And, as you might expect, Twitter’s stock price is down on the news:

We’ll keep you posted.


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