- Elon Musk said that a Twitter deal with a lower price tag is “not out of the question,” Bloomberg reported.
- He previously tweeted concerns about spam bots and sparked a response from Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal.
- Musk spoke at a conference in Miami and amid tough times in the tech industry, meaning he might be looking to renegotiate the deal.
At “The All In Summit 2022,” Elon Musk didn’t give the impression that he felt that way about his Twitter deal.
He said that a deal with a lower price tag is not “out of the question,” Bloomberg reported.
“Currently, what I’m being told is that there’s just no way to know the number of bots… It’s like, as unknowable as the human soul,” Musk said at the Miami conference, per a social media video, Bloomberg added.
It started Friday morning when he tweeted the deal was temporarily “on hold,” then later he was “still committed” to the purchase. That evening, he said his team would check how many spam bots were in 100 accounts.
This seemed to have sparked a response from Twitter stakeholders.
Musk also said Friday evening 100 accounts was the sample size Twitter uses, and then Musk said Saturday that Twitter’s legal team said he broke his NDA by revealing that.
Twitter CEO Parag Agarawl said in a thread Monday just anyone couldn’t perform a spam bot test with 100 accounts, and Musk replied to the thread with a poop emoji.
Twitter has long reported its spam account count at 5%, Variety has noted.
Musk has talked about having issues with spam or bot accounts on Twitter before, but Wedbush analyst Dan Ives said that Musk was talking about spam bots as a “dog ate the homework” style explanation to get out of the acquisition or negotiate down the price.
“The massive pressure on Tesla’s stock since the deal, a changing stock market/risk environment the last month, and a number of other financing factors has caused Musk to get ‘cold feet’ on the Twitter deal,” Wedbush noted, as Insider previously reported.
The bot idea is “not a new issue and likely more of a scapegoat to push for a lower price,” Ives added.
As for the conference, several Twitter users also reported that he said “The more questions I ask, the more my concerns grow,” about the company. Insider was not able to independently verify this.
—Gabrielle Bienasz (@gbienasz) May 16, 2022
Musk spoke at “The All In Summit 2022” Monday afternoon at 2 p.m. ET on video, and the media was not permitted to come to the event, per Bloomberg.
The event is an offshoot of the eponymous podcast, which covers “all things economic, tech, political, social, and poker,” according to its Twitter bio.
The All In event website promised “three days of discussions, belly laughs, poker, and fine wine with the besties,” and included speakers like Nate Silver, editor in chief of FiveThirtyEight, and Keith Rabois of Founders Fund.
Twitter and Elon Musk did not respond to a request for comment.