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Elon Musk threatens to end Twitter deal over ‘material breach’

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Self-proclaimed free-speech absolutist Elon Musk tweeted in May that his deal to buy Twitter was “temporarily on hold” until the company could prove accounts belonging to spam bots accounted for less than 5% of all users.

Musk is upping the ante, accusing Twitter of being in “material breach” of its deal obligations. The warning was delivered in a letter from Musk’s attorneys to Twitter’s legal officer, Vijaya Gadde.

The letter stated Musk reserved all rights to terminate the acquisition if the company did not present the details requested about the bot accounts. Not providing the information was a “clear material breach” it reiterated.

In a statement, Twitter responded¬†that it planned to enforce the completion of the deal on the agreed terms: “Twitter has and will continue to cooperatively share information with Musk to consummate the transaction in accordance with the terms of the merger agreement.”

Musk has stated his belief that spam bots account for at least 20% of Twitter users, while independent researchers projected the number around 9% to 15%. Musk said he needs the data from Twitter in order to conduct his own analysis because he does not believe in the company’s “lax testing methodologies.”

Reuters reports:

To be sure, Musk may be able to walk away or renegotiate the deal even if the law is on Twitter’s side. This is because any litigation is likely to be protracted, and Twitter may decide it makes more sense to agree to a lower price or receive compensation from Musk rather than try to force him to complete the transaction in court.

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Media

Rupert Murdoch Steps Down as Chairman of Fox Corporation and News Corp

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Rupert Murdoch, the 92-year-old media tycoon, announced his decision to step down from his roles as Chairman of Fox Corporation and Executive Chairman of News Corp on Thursday. The transition is set to take effect in November, with his son, Lachlan Murdoch, assuming the position of sole chairman for both media conglomerates.

According to reports from Fox News, Murdoch addressed his colleagues in a letter, where he explained that his decision was prompted by a desire to embrace new roles while recognizing the capable leadership of his son, Lachlan. He stated, “For my entire professional life, I have been engaged daily with news and ideas, and that will not change. But the time is right for me to take on different roles, knowing that we have truly talented teams and a passionate, principled leader in Lachlan who will become sole Chairman of both companies.”

Despite the transition, Rupert Murdoch made it clear that he would remain actively involved in the “contest of ideas,” highlighting the intensifying battle over freedom of speech and freedom of thought. He criticized elites and the media for prioritizing narratives over the pursuit of truth.

“In my new role, I can guarantee you that I will be involved every day in the contest of ideas,” he wrote.

Lachlan Murdoch issued a statement, congratulating his father for his remarkable 70-year career and acknowledging his enduring impact on the companies he founded. He expressed gratitude for Rupert Murdoch’s vision, pioneering spirit, and steadfast determination, assuring that he would continue to provide valuable counsel in his role as Chairman Emeritus.

Rupert Murdoch’s media empire includes FOX News Channel, which has been a dominant force in 24-hour news coverage since its launch in 1996. Under his leadership, it became one of the world’s most influential news sources. Additionally, Murdoch served as the CEO of 21st Century Fox from 1979 until 2015 and as its Chairman from 1991 to 2015.

Murdoch’s career began in 1954 when he assumed control of News Limited, a public corporation in Australia previously led by his father. He expanded his media holdings internationally, acquiring major UK publications like News of the World and The Sun in 1969, as well as U.S. newspapers including the New York Post and The Village Voice.

His impact extended to television with the launch of the FOX Broadcasting company in 1986 and the subsequent establishment of FOX Sports. In 2019, Fox Corporation emerged as a standalone, publicly traded entity following the separation of 21st Century Fox, redefining the U.S. media landscape.

Rupert Murdoch’s contributions to the media industry have earned him numerous accolades, including the Companion of the Order of Australia (A.C.) and induction into the Television Academy Hall of Fame. Alongside his family, he has supported various charitable organizations across the U.S., the U.K., Australia, Asia, and Israel.

The transition of leadership marks a significant moment in the media world, as Rupert Murdoch’s enduring legacy continues to influence the future of media and journalism.

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