Musk says Twitter deal 'cannot move forward' without proof of number of fake accounts

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Elon Musk
Elon Musk CHRIS DELMAS/AFP via Getty Images

Tesla CEO Elon Musk now says his deal to acquire Twitter "cannot move forward" until he receives more information about how many fake accounts are on the platform.

After tweeting that his deal to acquire the social media company was "on hold," Musk said Tuesday he's demanding Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal show proof that fewer than five percent of accounts on the site are fake or spam. Claiming that the number could be "much" higher, Musk said his deal to buy the company "cannot move forward until" this proof is provided.

When Musk previously said his Twitter deal was on hold, experts suggested he might be trying to back out of the agreement or lower the price of the acquisition. "My offer was based on Twitter's SEC filings being accurate," Musk tweeted Tuesday, and he suggested Monday that negotiating a lower price wouldn't be "out of the question." His deal was to buy the company for $54.20 per share, or $44 billion.

In a Twitter thread on Monday, Agrawal said that Twitter's estimate of how many spam account it has is "based on multiple human reviews (in replicate) of thousands of accounts," and he added, "We shared an overview of the estimation process with Elon a week ago and look forward to continuing the conversation with him, and all of you." Musk responded to his thread with the poop emoji.

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