Elon Musk is splashing out $44 billion to buy Twitter and make it private, so what does it mean for the social media site?
Musk is the ultimate wild-card, no one really knows what he will say or do next.
But these are five things the world’s richest man has vented about already and could be the first changes made to Twitter.
1. Change Twitter Blue and hand out blue ticks
Launched about a year ago, Twitter Blue is a subscription service that allows you to get a few perks – for example you can get rid of ads.
It costs $2.99 in the US and it’s also available in Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Musk recently said the price was too high.
He added that subscribers should get the coveted blue checkmark automatically if they get Twitter Blue.
2. Reinstate Donald Trump on Twitter (maybe)
Here we go, crossing the political minefield.
People who run Twitter at the moment have a volatile relationship with former US President Donald Trump, that’s for sure.
Trump was banned from Twitter after he made several posts in the wake of the Capitol Riots.
And we know Musk is a self-proclaimed free speech maximalist who first came up with the notion of buying Twitter over issues of freedom of speech.
But would Trump come back? He’s trying to start his own social media platform and told CNBC that’s his priority.
“No, I won’t be going back on Twitter,” Trump told CNBC’s Joe Kernen.
“I will be on Truth Social within the week. It’s on schedule. We have a lot of people signed up. I like Elon Musk. I like him a lot. He’s an excellent individual. We did a lot for Twitter when I was in the White House. I was disappointed by the way I was treated by Twitter. I won’t be going back on Twitter,” he said.
3. The edit button (finally!)
Musk being the man he is, you can expect a lot of technical changes – nothing too dramatic at first, though.
He said he wanted to open Twitter’s algorithm to the public, partly because he wants the platform to be more transparent and partly because programmers can have a little fun pitching ideas to make it better.
On top of that, he said he wanted to add an ‘edit’ button.
This is kind of a big deal because it sounds so simple to do, and yet Twitter still doesn’t have one.
No more living with a typo in your posts!
4. Kill spams and bots (or die trying)
He’s very clear on this: he literally said if he takes over Twitter, “we will defeat the spam bots or die trying”.
This is a major issue that’s becoming impossibly annoying: dozens of spam messages and comments written by bots.
He also added that he’d like to “authenticate all real humans” on the platform. Would this be via those elusive blue ticks?
5. Scrap ads and accept crypto
Musk said Twitter’s business model, which primarily relies on ads, should be changed.
It probably won’t happen tomorrow, but there’s a strong chance the platform will gradually phase out ads or at least reduce its dependence on them.
In addition to that, he’ll probably try and add more crypto payment options.
As things stand, you can use crypto (BAT, specifically) to tip certain users in certain regions, but we can expect more, especially with Musk’s favourite cryptocurrency: Dogecoin.