Elon Musk is set to buy Twitter. What will that mean for its users? Here's what we know.




Now that we know Elon Musk is set to buy Twitter, what's next?

On Monday, Twitter confirmed the billionaire and CEO of Tesla and SpaceX plans to acquire the social media company in a deal valued at $44 billion.

Once the deal closes, which is expected to happen this year, Twitter will become a privately held company.

"Twitter has tremendous potential - I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it," said Musk in a statement.

What does Musk's plan mean for the future of Twitter and its users? How is everyone responding to the idea of Twitter under new ownership? Here's everything we know so far.

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IT'S OFFICIAL: Elon Musk to acquire Twitter in $44 billion deal

Musk plans a Twitter takeover, which means a change for users.
Musk plans a Twitter takeover, which means a change for users.  

Why is Elon Musk buying Twitter?

Musk has long criticized the platform for how it moderates content. When Musk first proposed buying Twitter this month, he said he initially invested in the service because of its potential as a global platform for free speech.

"However, since making my investment I now realize the company will neither thrive nor serve this societal imperative in its current form," wrote Musk. "Twitter needs to be transformed as a private company."

How will Twitter change?

Musk's comments on free speech suggest the billionaire could loosen rules on how tweets are moderated. However, experts fear a service that already struggles to wrangle disinformation and harassment will become worse.

Musk has also hinted at other features he wants to implement, such as trying to rid the platform of spam bots and a system for "authenticating all humans."

It's also possible Musk wants to shift away from advertising and focus more deeply on Twitter as a subscription-style service.

How do users feel about it?

Reactions to the deal have been mixed. Around the time the deal was announced, the phrase "RIP Twitter" had been trending on the platform.

Some users were shocked at the price Musk was willing to pay for Twitter, while others pondered whether Musk made the deal to crack down on negative tweets about him.

Others wondered what the change in ownership might mean for previous users who had been suspended from the platform. Speaking of which ...

Does this mean Donald Trump is coming back to Twitter?

Twitter permanently banned the former president after the Jan. 6 Capitol riots because of what they called "the risk of further incitement of violence."

Many observers believe Musk will reinstate Trump once he gains control of the company.

However, Trump said he will not come back to Twitter, even under new ownership, opting to stick with his own TRUTH Social app.

How does Jack Dorsey feel about the deal?

Dorsey, a co-founder of Twitter and member of the company's board, supports Musk's plan to acquire Twitter.

According to a series of tweets published Monday, Dorsey said taking the company back from Wall Street and making it private is a "correct first step."

"In principle, I don't believe anyone should own or run Twitter," wrote Dorsey. "It wants to be a public good at a protocol level, not a company. Solving for the problem of it being a company however, Elon is the singular solution I trust. I trust his mission to extend the light of consciousness."

Could Twitter move to Texas?

Twitter is currently headquartered in San Francisco, but Musk has not hidden his love for Texas when it comes to his businesses.

Late last year, Musk announced plans to move Tesla's corporate headquarters from California to Texas. Musk also moved the headquarters of his tunneling and infrastructure company, The Boring Company, to Texas. He also plans to expand the presence of SpaceX to the state.

Experts and tech officials in Austin say don't be surprised if Musk decides Twitter might need a new home in Texas, too.

Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.

ALL ELON, ALL THE TIME:

  • WHO IS ELON MUSK? What to know about the world's richest man

  • CH-CH-CHANGES: Here's how Musk proposes to change Twitter.

  • TWITTER UNDER ELON MUSK: Will free speech mean more hate speech?

  • TRUMP BACK ON TWITTER? Would Musk allow former president back on Twitter?

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Elon Musk is set to buy Twitter. Here's what we know about his plan.

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