October 3, 2022

Maybe Elon Musk doesn’t want a legal battle with Twitter? After asking his lawyers to discuss a 165-page argument on why he no longer wants to complete his deal to buy the $44 billion platform, Musk suggested hashing things out publicly — perhaps in front of a jury of its fans Tesla, Dogecoin holders. and potential Martian colonists among his Twitter followers — to get to the bottom of the so-called Twitter bot issue.

“I hereby challenge @shanty in a public debate about the Twitter bot rate, Musk proclaims and to its 102 million forum members. “Let him prove to the public that Twitter has <5% fake or spammy daily users!"

Musk immediately pinned the tweet to his profile afterward he polled his followers on whether they believe Twitter’s argument that less than 5 percent of its monthly active users are “fake/spam.” The two options are “Yes” with three robot emojis (which so cleverly implies that users who choose this option are also bots) or “Lmaooo no”.

So far, 67.2 percent of users have chosen the “Lmaooo no” option. The poll closes on Sunday, and its results will almost inevitably be skewed in favor of Musk. It seems unlikely that this latest stunt will get an immediate response from Agrawal or Twitter president Bret Taylor, since the actual dispute (in front of a real judge and jury) is scheduled for a court hearing in just two months.

Twitter’s lawyers have already laid out what the company thinks about Musk’s bot accusations (which Twitter claims Musk got from some site called Botometer) in a heavy deposition of his own, which was heavily referenced in his tweets and may be updated to include today’s selection. Of course, they’re just experts on corporate law and contracts—they may not have what it takes to swing an argument run through memes, quote tweets, and polls.

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