Elon Musk attacks Twitter lawyer – ex-boss accuses him of bullying

Acquisition by multi-billionaire
Elon Musk attacks Twitter lawyer – ex-boss accuses him of bullying

Elon Musk remains true to his image as a Twitter troll.

© Patrick Pleul / DPA

Elon Musk is not yet the head of Twitter, but he is already doing so, if not as a particularly good one. On his future platform he has now approached the Twitter chief lawyer – promptly there was displeasure against the richest man in the world.

Elon Musk has come under fire for contributing to a wave of online attacks on Twitter’s chief legal officer, Vijaya Gadde. The situation could complicate the tech billionaire’s intended purchase of Twitter, as in the acquisition agreement he committed not to “denigrate” the online service or its agents.

Elon Musk pours fuel on the fire

Musk says he wants to buy Twitter because there isn’t enough free speech there. The service in the USA is accused of “censorship” mainly by right-wing camps and by corona deniers. Both groups have long been dissatisfied with Gadde’s course. Musk now poured fuel on the fire.

He first criticized Twitter’s approach in an episode about the son of current President Joe Biden in the final spurt of the 2020 US election campaign. At that time, a newspaper article said, among other things, that Biden’s son Hunter had offered business partners meetings with his father. The source given was data that had allegedly been discovered on a Hunter Biden notebook in a workshop. At the time, Twitter blocked the newspaper’s account because it was forbidden to distribute illegally obtained content on the platform. Twitter later reversed the decision and then-CEO Jack Dorsey apologized.

Trigger for the new controversy was now an article of the website “Politico”, according to which Gadde expressed concern in an internal meeting about the possible change of the platform with Musk as the owner and could not hold back the tears. Musk initially wrote about a tweet with censorship allegations against Gadde that Twitter’s approach to the newspaper article was “clearly incredibly inappropriate”. He followed up later on Wednesday with a photomontage of her face, calling it a “left-wing bias.”

Gadde was then subjected to more attacks and abuse in tweets, and some racist posts were removed. Among others, the former Twitter boss Dick Costolo then went to court with Musk. “Bullying is not leadership,” he wrote on Twitter. “All I’m saying is that Twitter has to be politically neutral,” Musk said. Former Facebook security chief Alex Stamos criticized Musk’s behavior as unacceptable and unprofessional.

Musk wants to buy Twitter

Musk agreed this week with Twitter to acquire the online service for around $44 billion. Now, however, enough shareholders have to be willing to give him their shares.


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