After the American billionaire, Elon Musk, acquired Twitter, Tesla’s stock witnessed a noticeable decline of more than 12% of its value, in light of a European warning to the businessman of the consequences of allowing the publication of violent or hateful content on the popular social networking platform.
The newspaper said Tesla’s stock fell sharply the day after Musk and Twitter reached an agreement on the Tesla CEO’s acquisition of ownership of the social networking site.
Tesla lost $126 billion in value amid investor concerns that Musk may have to sell shares to fund his share of the Twitter purchase.
The Washington Post quoted analysts as saying that “Tesla’s stock, and thus Musk’s net worth, will be affected by two factors, the first is the amount that Musk has committed to buying Twitter, and the second is concerns that he is distracting Musk from his role as CEO of Tesla.”
The automaker’s stock recently rose on the back of a strong earnings report after Tesla reported a profit of $3.3 billion.
Musk’s net worth was $270 billion last week, according to Forbes magazine.
The wealth of the American billionaire fell to about 240 billion dollars, on Tuesday.
But it seems that the matter did not stop there, as the United Kingdom and the European Union, Elon Musk, warned of the consequences of increasing hate speech on Twitter, after owning the platform, according to the newspaper “The Guardian“.
A UK government spokesperson said: “Businesses must comply with the upcoming Internet Security Bill, which would require platforms to protect users from harmful content, or face the threat of heavy fines and, in the case of repeat offences, an outright ban.”
For his part, the EU Commissioner for the Internal Market, Thierry Breton, noted the importance of Musk’s compliance with the newly agreed digital services law, which requires online platforms to process illegal content such as hate speech.
With the law expected to come into force in 2024, violators could face fines of up to 6% of global sales volume and an outright ban.
The law will require social media platforms to allow users to report illegal content, such as terrorism promotion or commercial scams, in an “easy and efficient manner” so that it can be quickly removed.
Musk considered that the warning of the European Union and the United Kingdom constitutes a violation of freedom of expression.
He said in a tweet on Twitter, “If people want less freedom of expression, they will ask the government to pass laws for this purpose, bypassing the law goes against the will of the people.”
But Amnesty International said it was concerned about any decision Twitter might take after Musk’s takeover to undermine implementation of policies and mechanisms designed to quell hate speech online.
The Guardian quoted Deborah Brown, digital rights researcher and human rights defender at Human Rights Watch, as saying that small changes to the platform could have a devastating effect.