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Elon Musk tells Twitter employees users should be able to say “pretty outrageous things”

Elon Musk's first ever meeting with Twitter employees.
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Soon-to-be Twitter owner Elon Musk addressed Twitter employees directly for the first time today in a Q&A meeting. The Tesla and SpaceX CEO added some detail about his plans for the company.

A big part of Musk’s plans when bidding for Twitter was his dedication to “authenticating all humans” on the platform and reducing spam. Musk speculated that the number of bots and fake accounts on the platform is higher than Twitter is reporting in its filings.

During the “hands-on” meeting, in footage obtained by Project Veritas, Musk elaborated on what this proposal might involve. Musk said that human authentication shouldn’t be a requirement for using Twitter because anonymity can be helpful for people to freely express their political views without fear of retribution.

During the meeting, Musk proposed an idea whereby users could pay to be authenticated as human through a tool like the Twitter Blue subscription.

Musk said that bots and spam need to be contained. “I think an important goal for Twitter would be to try to include as, as much of the country, as much of the world as possible,” he said.

With regards to content moderation, Musk, describing himself as a “free speech absolutist,” said that people should be able to say “pretty outrageous things,” as long as the speech is legal.

“I think it’s essential to have free speech,” Musk said on the call, after describing his love for Twitter. He added that “multiple opinions” should exist on Twitter to “make sure that we’re not sort of driving a narrative.” 

Musk said that he sees his political views as “moderate,” adding that he traditionally has voted Democrat but voted Republican this week for the first time in his life. Musk said he believes most of the world, in general, favors moderate politics but that the far left and right should be able to voice their frustrations on Twitter without censorship.

Musk discussed his ultimate vision for Twitter, alleging that the mainstream news media is “negative” and that they “almost never” get it right. 

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