For Immediate Release
April 25, 2022
Accountable Tech Co-Founder Jesse Lehrich issued the following statement Monday in response to Elon Musk’s $44 billion purchase of Twitter:
“Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter will further toxify our information ecosystem and threaten public safety, especially for those who are already most vulnerable.
Twitter has outsized influence in shaping both public discourse and industry-wide platform governance standards. And while it’s hardly been a poster-child for healthy social media, it has taken welcome steps in recent years to mitigate systemic risks, ratcheting up pressure on the likes of Facebook and YouTube to follow suit. Elon intends to steamroll those safeguards and provide a megaphone to extremists who traffic in disinformation, hate, and harassment. Under the guise of ‘free speech,’ his vision will silence and endanger marginalized voices, and tear at the fraying fabric of democracy.
Given the urgency of these threats, Twitter should immediately outline what steps are being taken to ensure Elon can’t unilaterally reverse critical protections for users. But this episode also underscores the desperate need for Congress to pass structural reforms. We cannot continue to subject our entire information ecosystem to the whims of a few self-serving billionaires with no accountability.”