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Twitter Sees First Win in Legal Case Against Elon Musk, as Musk Looks to Exit Twitter Takeover Deal

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Elon Musk Launches Hostile Takeover Bid for Twitter

This probably doesn’t bode well for Elon Musk’s chances at wriggling out of his $44 billion Twitter takeover bid.

Today, Delaware’s Court of Chancery has ruled in Twitter’s favor for an expedited trial in the Musk acquisition case, with Musk and Co. given just five days to present their argument as to why Musk should be allowed to pull out of the deal. The case has been scheduled for October.

The Chancellor reportedly only needed 10 minutes to come to a decision.

Musk’s legal team had sought to extend the length of the trial, arguing that it needs more time to review the data required, and that Twitter is seeking to obfuscate its figures on fake and spam accounts by expediting the timeline, which Musk’s team says is the key reason for pulling out of the deal.

But in another potential blow for Musk’s chances, Chancellor Kathaleen McCormick said that addressing this element is not necessary, since “nothing in the merger agreement turns on that question.”

As reported by CNBC, Twitter’s lawyers argued that a quick trial is necessary ‘in order stop the ongoing harm Twitter has experienced from the uncertainty of the deal’s closure and alleged disparagement by Musk’.

Musk has been very vocal, and very public, in his criticism of the company, and its claim that only 5% of its active accounts are spam and/or bots. Musk has also criticized Twitter’s leadership, its prospects, its board – basically, Musk has been open in his disdain for the company, almost from the beginning of his takeover push.

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Twitter says that Musk’s actions have violated the non-disparagement clause in the takeover agreement, and it seems inevitable that Twitter will eventually also argue that Musk has caused significant monetary harm to the company due to his attacks, which will be difficult for Twitter to fully recover from, whether Musk is forced to pay up or not.

Which is another key consideration. Right now, Twitter is almost in a lose-lose scenario – either it ends up in a worse market position, and it has to pick up the pieces as Musk exits the deal, or it winds up being owned by someone who clearly no longer wants it, which is an uncertain outcome in itself.

And if Musk is forced to buy it, what then? Will Musk be able to put aside the bitterness of the takeover dispute to then build Twitter into a significant, valuable business?

It’s pretty much a mess all around – and Twitter employees now have to deal with at least another three months of this, as they await the legal trial.

The human impacts, in this sense, are significant. And while speculation swirls around Musk’s real motivation for his decision to exit the bid, the bottom line increasingly seems to be that Musk will have to pay, with any attempts to either reduce the bid price, or side-step the contract terms, likely negated by Musk’s own public statements and comments.

Which Musk seems to believe will have little bearing – and for good reason, given that Musk has avoided responsibility for such in the past.

Back in 2019, Musk was sued for defamation after he leveled unfounded claims, via tweet, that a member of a cave rescue team working to save a group of trapped youngsters in Thailand was a ‘pedo guy’.

Musk’s legal team argued that, as Musk did not mention the victim by name within the offending tweet, that it was unclear whom exactly Musk was referring to, which negates the defamation claim. The court ultimately agreed, and that case seems to have emboldened Musk to say whatever he likes via tweet, knowing that he can probably find legal loopholes to disown such opinions in retrospect, by being careful in who he does and doesn’t refer to directly in his comments.

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You can expect to see Musk’s legal team refer to this again in the upcoming Twitter trial, which likely explains by Musk’s tweets about the case remain fairly cryptic.

Either way, though, the outcome for Twitter is not good – while Twitter also knows that Musk is trying to extend the timeline for the trial, which could then complicate his financing for the deal, another potential out for the billionaire.

It’s a sad next stage for what once seemed to be a positive move for the app’s future, at least to some analysts and supporters. Many viewed Musk as a potential savior for the platform, with his genius to lead Twitter into a new phase of life.

Now, that seems like an afterthought. And when all the current board members and execs get paid as a result of the Musk deal, if it indeed does go through, what then?

Will Musk even be able to fix this, if he is forced to become Tweeter in chief?



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These are the social media platforms we most want a detox from

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Instagram

Photo by Solen Feyissa / Unsplash

Many people like social media, others find it addictive but they are not necessarily enjoying the experience when they are using it. In this category there are some people who would welcome a detox, even if this is only partial. Digital detox refers to a period of time when a person voluntarily refrains from using digital devices such as smartphones, computers, and social media platforms. A digital detox can provide relief from the pressure of constant connection to electronic devices.

Looking at the U.K., a new survey finds that the majority want to delete their Instagram account ahead of any other. 

This finding comes from the company VPNOverview.com and the results have been shared with Digital Journal. For the research, VPNOverview analysed the number of monthly Google searches in the U.K. for terms related to deleting accounts to see what platforms people want a detox from. 

This process found that media sharing social network Instagram was the platform people wanted to delete themselves from the most, with more than 321,000 searches a month from users wishing to do so. Recently, Instagram came under fire and was accused of copying other competing platforms like TikTok after big changes were made to the app, with some of these changes now being reversed. 

Facebook takes second place, with more than 82,000 searches a month in the U.K. At the end of 2021, Facebook saw its first-ever decline in the number of daily users using the platform and a 1% decline in revenue in the last quarter of 2022. 

With more than 73,000 searches a month for information on deleting accounts, Snapchat takes third place. In July of 2022, Snap, Snapchat’s parent company, announced that they would be debuting Snapchat for Web, the first ever web version of the app since its initial release in 2011. 

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Plenty of Fish takes fifth place, with more than 23,000 searches around deleting accounts made every month in the UK. It’s the only dating app in the top ten, with Tinder narrowly missing out in 12th place with 8,500 searches. 

            Rank          Platform          Monthly searches to delete account 
        1      Instagram      321,000 
        2      Facebook      82,000 
        3      Snapchat      73,000 
        4      Google      50,000 
        5      Plenty of Fish      23,000 
        6      Twitter      18,000 
        7      Reddit      14,000 
        8      Amazon      13,000 
        9      Kik      12,000 
        10      TikTok      8,800 

Also featuring on the table is online marketplace Amazon, which comes in eighth place on the list, with 13,000 searches from people wanting to delete their accounts every month. Amazon recently announced that it was increasing the cost of its Amazon Prime service by £1 a month in the U.K., with annual memberships shooting up from £79 to £95. 

Commenting on the findings, a spokesperson from VPNOverview tells Digital Journal: “It’s interesting to see the contrast of platforms on the list, and how it’s not just social media that people want a cleanse from following controversies around privacy and data collection. Platforms offering subscription services like Amazon are also taking a hit, with the rising cost of living meaning many Brits are having to cut corners on things they use every day.”  

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