Twitter reportedly bows to Elon Musk's spam bot data request

Elon Musk's Twitter account
(Image credit: Jay Bonggolto / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Twitter will reportedly comply with Elon Musk's request for data on its spam bot problem.
  • This will give Musk access to the social media platform's internal database containing more than 500 million daily tweets.
  • Musk previously threatened to withdraw his $44 billion bid if Twitter refused to hand over data.

After Elon Musk spent weeks ranting about Twitter's spam bot problem, the social media platform may be caving in to pressure. The Washington Post (opens in new tab) reports that Twitter will grant Musk access to its "firehose" of more than 500 million daily tweets.

The move is reportedly intended to appease Musk's concerns over the number of spam bot accounts on the platform. Twitter previously revealed that fake accounts account for less than 5% of the platform's user base, but Musk wanted to double-check this information.

As a result, the Tesla CEO temporarily put the deal on hold in May, signaling his waning desire to complete the $44 billion acquisition. Earlier this week, Musk threatened to back out of the deal over Twitter's refusal to provide information about how it measures the number of fake accounts on the platform.

In a letter sent to Twitter, Musk's legal team accused the company of "resisting" Musk's information rights under the merger agreement. The world's richest man insisted that the transaction could not go forward until Twitter demonstrated that less than 5% of Twitter's user base is made up of spam bot accounts. 

Musk may soon have access to the platform's treasure trove of data, which includes a real-time record of daily tweets, the devices used to post these tweets, and information about the tweets' owners. According to the Post, Musk could have access to this information as soon as this week.

That said, Twitter's executives doubt Musk will find anything in the internal database that will help him estimate the volume of spam bots on the platform, the report says.

In an email to Android Central, a Twitter spokesperson reiterated the company's earlier statement, saying it "will continue to cooperatively share information with Mr. Musk to consummate the transaction in accordance with the terms of the merger agreement." However, it did not directly respond to The Post's report.

"We believe this agreement is in the best interest of all shareholders," Twitter added. "We intend to close the transaction and enforce the merger agreement at the agreed price and terms."

Last month, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal said in a tweet (opens in new tab) that it would be impossible to "know which accounts are counted as mDAUs (monetizable daily active users) on any given day." Musk responded and said this information is fundamental to the company's financial health.

Jay Bonggolto
News Writer

Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.