US President Joe Biden slammed billionaire Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter, saying the social media platform “spews lies all across the world.”
“Now what are we all worried about? Elon Musk goes out and buys an outfit that sends and spews lies all across the world,” Biden said during a fundraiser in Chicago on Friday.
“There’s no editors anymore in America. How do we expect kids to be able to understand what is at stake?” the US leader said.
Biden’s remarks came after Musk announced layoffs at Twitter starting Friday.
Musk has acted swiftly since his $44 billion takeover of Twitter last week, firing CEO Parag Agrawal first and canning the entire board of directors, leaving himself temporarily as the sole director of the platform.
The layoff announcements do not come as a surprise, as Musk announced after the acquisition that he planned to lay off up to half of the company’s 7,500 staff members.
Musk said Friday Twitter has seen a major drop in revenue, accusing “activists groups” of pressuring advertisers.
“Twitter has had a massive drop in revenue, due to activist groups pressuring advertisers, even though nothing has changed with content moderation and we did everything we could to appease the activists,” Musk wrote on his personal account.
“Extremely messed up! They’re trying to destroy free speech in America,” he added.
The tweet came days after a group of more than 40 civil rights and activist groups issued a letter addressing top advertisers on Twitter, demanding they cease all advertising if Musk undermines brand safety and community standards.
His takeover of Twitter has ignited a firestorm of debate regarding free speech versus online harm, with Musk previously criticizing Twitter’s moderation policies and accusing the platform of being biased toward left-wing views.__The Nation