Shareholders sue to delay Musk's Twitter purchase

Originally published at: Shareholders sue to delay Musk's Twitter purchase | Boing Boing


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The Orlando Police Pension Fund, of all people. Weird flex, but okay.


Twitter buyout: Larry Ellison bursts into Elon’s office, slaps $1b down on the desk


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educated investors need not apply


Anything to delay the sale until after the 2022 elections is good. Delaying the sale until after the 2024 elections is a bonus. By then, hopefully, Twitter will be irrelevant and been replaced by another an actually egalitarian social network, perhaps, inspired by Fediverse. Social media should be a public utility.


As entertaining as this might be, I predict it goes nowhere. Out of curiosity, I looked up what an “interested shareholder” is under Delaware law, and it pretty clearly states that it’s someone who owns at least 15% of the company, so I’m not sure what grounds this lawsuit is using to say Musk is an interested shareholder because he purchased 9% of shares.

(If anyone knows what I’m missing here, I’d love to hear it)


Why does it need to exist at all? I’ve yet to see a use case for it that couldn’t be handled other ways and save society all the advertising, FUD, bots, data theft, and all the rest. It’s like the coal power of the internet. Sure, it does make power, but the negative externalities are sooooooo not worth it.

Fuck social media.


Wouldn’t making it a public utility accomplish pretty much the same thing as Musk is saying he wants to do? If it’s a public utility then free speech requirements would prevent pretty much any meaningful content moderation (at least in the U.S.)

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Would it? You don’t get to harass people on the bus.


Yes, it probably would. The bus’s primary purpose isn’t speech, so it’s pretty straightforward for the bus to establish guidelines based on people’s expectation of privacy. Those rules give the bus driver a lot of leeway to say that any unwanted interaction is grounds for ejection, regardless of the specific content.

On social media, speech is the primary purpose. Without speech, it wouldn’t exist. Because of that, the courts are almost certainly going to put a much higher bar on what kind of harassment will qualify as grounds for ejection. Likely it will be limited to the same sorts of things that give a person legal standing to sue in other media, and even then the courts are likely to limit remedies to injunctions against communicating with certain people, not compete ejection.

There is almost zero chance that the sorts of behaviors that got Trump banned would be grounds for removal.

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You answer your own question:

all the advertising, FUD, bots, data theft, and all the rest


Don’t use this argument. This argument is used against art, books, musical genres, aboriginal tribes, the adult performance industry, you name it to justify why something shouldn’t exist, very often for them being immoral or not serving some “legitimate” purpose.

This place, right here, is social media, and I assure you there are very many people who very much would like us not to exist.

Much of social media suffers from a lack of policing of hatred and bigotry. That sucks, but that’s like saying rap music shouldn’t exist because the topics are violent or rock music shouldn’t exist because it poisons the minds of young boys and girls or whatever. Just fix the fucking thing. This place is proof that it can be done.


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Would you consider “newsgroups” as largely public utilities? IIRC they had non-centralized servers, and the various servers would all link up and build the news group threads. Each category its own little niche, like But there was no one entity that run them. (Am I remembering this correctly, I was a user, not someone who knew what he was doing.)

I think eventually they got a bit too big and unmanageable, and people migrated to specific forums for their interests. And then eventually there became the larger hangouts that were a catch all, where you can be on one platform for all of your interests. I get the appeal.

IMO, social media is what you make of it. Stay out of the trenches and don’t interact with people who can’t be civil.


Institutional investors and a lot of Twitter employees are unhappy and nervous about this acquisition. Meanwhile, people like Thiel and Ellison and a Saudi prince are eagerly bankrolling Musk’s majority position and EmptyG and the death cultists are cheering it on. Only a Libertarian business “genius” would see all this all this as portents of success for the company.


In civilised countries public goods are public utilities - power, water, gas (not that sort of gas, USians) etc.
But if those things can’t be public utilities in the USA then social media has no chance.

All those other public utilities that are publicly owned in civilised countries operate under strict regulatory regimes. There is no reason why social media as a public utility should not also do so. But your “at least in the US” note provides another reason why it could not happen in the USA, given what is defined as free speech there.

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Bravo, sir. Bravo! Just fix the fucking thing for sure, but what is done here probably does not quite constitute what many free speech warriors claim is free speech under the US constitution, sadly.