SpaceX founder and newly minted Twitter owner Elon Musk has claimed the risk of his assassination is ‘quite significant.’
The claim came during a two-hour Twitter Spaces chat over the weekend, during which the richest man on earth said he would definitely not ‘be doing any open-air car parades, let me put it that way.’
‘Frankly the risk of something bad happening to me, or even literally being shot, is quite significant,’ he added.
‘It’s not that hard to kill somebody if you wanted to, so hopefully they don’t, and fate smiles upon the situation with me and it does not happen … There’s definitely some risk there.’
Musk has signaled that his takeover of Twitter will usher in a new era for the social media platform, during which political voices will not be silenced and free speech will be the highest priority
Musk recently revealed that he has given two journalists unfettered access to the complete treasure trove of Twitter’s internal corporate communications that will allow the public to better understand how the company operated during its most controversial moments
In the first Twitter Files release from journalist Matt Taibbi, readers gain insight into how Twitter content moderation leadership came to the muddled decision to censor the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story
Musk’s comments came after Friday evening’s inaugural installment of what has been dubbed the Twitter Files – an unfettered inside look into corporate communications at Twitter over the last handful of years, including during some of the company’s most controversial moments.
Musk granted journalists Matt Taibbi and Bari Weiss full access to the delicate subject matter, which he said ultimately ‘might make sense to have…publicly available so that anyone can look at them.’
But for now, it is up to the chosen news professionals to analyze and release choice parts from the treasure trove.
Kicking things off Friday evening, Taibbi published a thread that provided insight into the suppression of the infamous Hunter Biden laptop story that the New York Post first published in October 2020, just before the last presidential election.
‘What you’re about to read is the first installment in a series, based upon thousands of internal documents obtained by sources at Twitter,’ wrote Taibbi. ‘The Twitter Files, Part One: How and Why Twitter Blocked the Hunter Biden Laptop Story.’
The emails contained back-and-forths between various members of Twitter’s content moderation team that ultimately led to the shaky decision to ban the story without consulting co-founder and then-CEO, Jack Dorsey.
‘Twitter took extraordinary steps to suppress the story, removing links and posting warnings that it may be “unsafe,”‘ wrote Taibbi. ‘They even blocked its transmission via direct message, a tool hitherto reserved for extreme cases, e.g. child pornography.’
Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco, California, where a majority of the company’s employees have either been let go or fired since Musk’s recent takeover
The world’s richest man said during a Twitter Spaces chat over the weekend that he believes the risk to his life is not insignificant and that he plans to avoid exposing himself unnecessarily to possible dangers from crowds
He then detailed various reactions from the political class out of Washington, DC, including Trump campaign staffers and members of Congress.
“[Where] our speech is not suppressed, and we can say what we want to say without fear of reprisals,” he declared.
Musk said the idea of the Twitter Files exercise is to ‘come clean on everything that has happened in the past in order to build public trust for the future.’
‘I’m not controlling the narrative. It’s just obvious there’s been a lot of control of information, suppression of information, including things that affected elections, and that just all need to be … you just want to have the stuff out there,’ he said.
Musk, who calls himself a ‘free speech absolutist,’ has said that ‘as long as you’re not really causing harm to somebody else, then you should be allowed to say what you want.’
That philosophy has, so far, been governing his approach to running Twitter, where nearly all previously banned accounts have been allowed back on the platform.
Though he claimed to have read hardly any of the information he has now transmitted to Taibbi and Weiss, he has been left disquieted by the company’s previous role working closely with members of the Biden administration during and before the current president assumed office.
‘Frankly, Twitter was acting like an arm of the Democratic National Committee, it was absurd,’ said Musk.
‘If Twitter is doing one team’s bidding before an election shutting down dissenting voices on a pivotal election, that is the definition of election interference.’