Twitter defends its strategy, Musk reiterates that takeover of the social network cannot be carried out without guarantees on fake accounts

The quirky entrepreneur who wanted to buy Twitter and submitted a $44 billion offer at the end of April muddied his intentions last week by saying the operation was put on hold for a while due to his doubts about the real proportion of spam. and fake accounts on the platform.

The head of Twitter on Monday posted a long explanation on the social network about the measures taken to combat fake accounts after criticism from Elon Musk. “First, let me state the obvious: Spam hurts the work of real people on Twitter and can therefore hurt our business.”, Parag Agrawal tweeted. Social network is “highly recommended to detect and remove as much spam as possible” and “Anyone who claims otherwise is simply wrong”.

Read also: Elon Musk announces suspension of Twitter takeover pending details on share of fake accounts

The group blocks more than half a million fake accounts every day, and several million users fail certain verification procedures every week, he said, while acknowledging that it can sometimes be difficult to tell legitimate accounts from others. When Twitter claims that the share of fake accounts is well below 5%, this is based on internal data.

“We shared an overview of the evaluation process with Elon [Musk] a week ago and look forward to continuing the conversation with him and all of you.”concludes Mr. Agrawal.

Read also: Twitter: who are its users?

“20% fake accounts and spam”

Referring to explanations provided on Monday by Parag Agrawal about the measures taken to combat spam and fake accounts, to which Elon Musk responded with a poop emoji, the Tesla boss indicated on Tuesday that the Twitter takeover will not end until it is guaranteed. that less than 5% of accounts on the platform are fake. “Yesterday, the CEO of Twitter refused to prove that less than 5% of the accounts were fake.”tweeted Mr. Musk, who has almost 94 million followers on the social network. “Until he does this, the transaction cannot be continued”he added.

Mr Musk had already announced on Friday that he would put on hold the acquisition of the company he wants to buy for $44 billion before making amends hours later, specifying that he “always busy” carry out the operation.

Speaking via video link at the conference on Monday, Musk estimated that fake accounts make up at least 20% of Twitter users, according to Bloomberg and tweets from people who attended the event. “20% of fake accounts and spam is four times what Twitter claims, but the real number could be much higher.”, Musk tweeted on Tuesday. After contacting Agence France-Presse, Twitter did not immediately respond to the eccentric entrepreneur’s latest prediction. The group’s shares fell 3.5% in electronic trading ahead of the Wall Street opening.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers “Only a naive person would believe that protecting free speech is Elon Musk’s only motivation to buy Twitter.”

Ever since he filed his takeover bid, accepted by the social network’s board of directors, Mr. Musk has shown his desire to make it a bastion of freedom of expression. He also promised to rid Twitter of spam, better authenticate users and increase transparency, without specifying how he intends to do this.

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Peace with AFP