Jack Dorsey Responds to Elon Musk’s Twitter Leadership

Jack Dorsey Responds to Elon Musk’s Twitter Leadership
(L): Elon Musk speaks at the E3 gaming convention in Los Angeles, On June 13, 2019. (R): Jack Dorsey speaks at the Consensus 2018 blockchain technology conference in New York City, on May 16, 2018. (Mike Blake, Mike Segar/Reuters)
Jack Phillips

Twitter’s former CEO, Jack Dorsey, criticized Elon Musk’s leadership and taking over of Twitter of the company in a series of social media posts last week.

Users of the social media platform Bluesky asked Dorsey a question about whether Musk was the right owner. His response was, “No.”

“No. Nor do I think he acted right after realizing his timing was bad. Nor do I think the board should have forced the sale. It all went south,” Dorsey wrote last week.

In April 2022, Dorsey previously described Musk as the “singular solution” to take over Twitter. Further, he said he trusted Musk to “to extend the light of consciousness” amid reports Musk wanted to purchase the social media platform.

He added that he is glad new social media platforms such as Bluesky—a new social media platform that is being called a possible alternative to Twitter that has been recently touted by mainstream media figures and celebrities—are being created and built. Dorsey, who is reportedly still a Twitter shareholder, has backed Bluesky since 2019.

“I think he should have walked away and paid the [$1 billion]” breakup fee, he also said.

After making a bid to purchase Twitter for $44 billion, or around $54.20 per share, Musk later signaled that he wanted to back out of the deal. It wasn’t clear that either Musk or Twitter had that option, as Musk would have had to provide proof to a Delaware court that he had a good reason for walking away from the deal.

When Dorsey headed Twitter before departing under the company’s previous management, he received widespread criticism for the alleged silencing of right-wing accounts or individuals with viewpoints that strayed too far from the mainstream narrative. While he was in charge, prominent people such as former President Donald Trump, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), and anti-COVID-19 vaccine writer Alex Berenson were permanently suspended.

Meanwhile, a number of journalists have revealed internal Twitter messages over the past several years suggesting there was outsized external influence on Twitter’s content moderators to censor, deplatform, or reduce the reach of posts from a range of prominent accounts. The files also revealed alleged secret blacklists targeting several prominent accounts.
Dorsey, in December 2022, suggested that Musk release everything to the public. “If the goal is transparency to build trust, why not just release everything without filter and let people judge for themselves? Including all discussions around current and future actions?” Dorsey said on Twitter. “Make everything public now.”

Musk, who laid off a significant portion of Twitter’s staff after he took over the company, has not publicly responded to Dorsey’s criticism.

Reports have indicated that Musk laid off about 7,500 employees, while the Tesla CEO has explained it was done for cost-cutting purposes. Other tech companies, including Meta and Amazon, have laid off significant numbers of employees in recent months amid tightening macroeconomic conditions.

As for Dorsey, he unveiled the Bluesky project four years ago, which was initially funded by Twitter to create an “open and decentralized standard for social media.” He wrote at the time that “the goal is for Twitter to ultimately be a client of this standard.”

While there have been claims Bluesky would distinguish itself from Twitter by allowing users to control their own data and be free from corporate influence, some researchers have said otherwise.

According to The Wrap, Ashley Gjovik, an American program manager, posted screenshots warning that Bluesky’s terms of service give Dorsey and BlueSky “a ‘perpetual’ and ‘irrevocable’ license to all your content (posts, names, likeness, pics).”

She added that “Bluesky can delete your account for any reason, but may refuse to delete it if you ask.”

All disputes are resolved through individual arbitration.

Over the past week or so, some figures like model Chrissy Teigen and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) have stated they’ve joined Bluesky. Over the weekend, a large number of legacy news outlets like The New York Times, The Verge, Vox, and Fortune published articles on the platform.

Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter with 15 years experience who started as a local New York City reporter. Having joined The Epoch Times' news team in 2009, Jack was born and raised near Modesto in California's Central Valley. Follow him on X: https://twitter.com/jackphillips5
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