Elon Musk’s Twitter posts are not being checked by the board of Tesla, even though a recent settlement claimed the company would oversee these communications, the CEO revealed on Sunday. Musk reached a settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission in October that “communications relating to the company…including…Twitter” would be overseen by the board.
Lesley Stahl asked Musk in a chat on the CBS show 60 Minutes whether any tweets had been censored since the settlement, to which Musk answered “no.” Stahl then asked if someone has to read the tweets before they go out, to which Musk again responded “no.” Stahl then asked which tweets would need reviewing, and Musk explained that “the only tweets that would have to be, say, reviewed, would be if a tweet had a probability of causing a movement in the stock…otherwise it’s hello, first amendment. Freedom of speech is fundamental.”
Musk’s issues with the commission date back to at least August, when he claimed he would take the company private in a scheme that would buy shares at $420 each, a 20 percent premium over that day’s trade price. The commission investigated and found that Musk’s claim he had the funding secured for this deal was “false and misleading.” As part of the settlement deal, Musk and Tesla also agreed to pay $20 million in fines each and Musk agreed to step down as chairman of the board, with Robyn Denholm taking his place.
Musk remains critical of the commission after the dispute. In October, he referred to it as the “Shortseller Enrichment Commission,” an allusion to the high number of investors betting against Tesla’s stock. In the Sunday interview, Musk interjected to note that “I do not respect the SEC. I do not respect them.” When Stahl asked how the team will effectively judge which tweets will move the stock, Musk replied “I guess we might make some mistakes. Who knows. Nobody’s perfect.”
With Musk continuing to use Twitter to make regular announcements, like The Boring Company’s grand opening for December 18, it seems the entrepreneur’s Twitter presence is set to remain very similar to before the settlement.
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