Did Elon Musk’s private jet tracker actually cause him to buy Twitter?
Did Elon Musk fly too high by buying Twitter? Or was it a wise decision to battle anything that will keep him from flying? In case you’re not aware of this controversy Elon Musk is involved in, or you simply lost count of them since they’re too many, here’s a small refresher. Elon Musk was the target of an investigator & hacker who had a Twitter account that published information about his private jet usage.
All multibillionaires surely have some tail to step on if we take enough time to investigate them, Elon Musk is definitely not exempt. But did he buy Twitter to stop a Twitter bot programmer? We think that could be a little capricious and little strategic for such a businessman. As we’ve realized through the Twitter files and Hunter Biden’s laptop controversy, Twitter holds valuable information.
Musk undoubtedly bought Twitter conspiring to control and hold information, but not to stop a bot. Here’s all you need to know.
How did Musk buy Twitter?
On April 14, Elon Musk made a non-binding offer to Twitter looking to acquire the company. His unrequested offer consisted of $43 billion, or $54.20 per share, and took it private. Although the whole offer was made to the company’s management, the proposal was described as “a hostile takeover attempt”. There was surely a threat implied of purchasing the outstanding stock because of management decline.
Due to the delicate situation, the board replied that they’d carefully review the proposal, which as you can imagine, ended up happening. But the question is still why? According to a TED interview, Elon Musk gave on this topic, the tycoon said that his purpose was to make Twitter a “platform for free speech around the globe”. He also said free speech is a “societal imperative for a functioning democracy”.
We definitely agree with those statements and celebrate free speech, but, honestly, other intentions might be hiding behind that woke discourse. Although Musk kept insisting he did not intend to increase his wealth through this purchase, critics have pointed to Musk’s interest in altering Twitter’s moderation policies. It looks like this goes further than any interest in fighting government censorship.
Twitter is the platform where politics happen, the rest of social networks make other aspects of life visible, but Twitter is all about ideology. These are the reasons why Musk bought the platform, further than the need of stopping a bot that publicly signaled his ecological incongruity. Musk is one of the most controversial men, having Twitter is definitely a power move. Anyway, let’s talk about the plane tracker.
Federal Aviation Administration, OpenSky Network, and Automatic Dependent Surveillance System.35 In June 2020, he created the Twitter account “Elon Musk’s Jet” (“Elon Musk’s Jet”), dedicated to tracking Musk’s private jet by using bots that mine publicly available air traffic data.6 In November 2021, Musk requested that Sweeney stop tracking his private Gulfstream jet, citing security reasons.7 After being offered $5,000 dollars, Sweeney told Musk that he could stop tracking his private jet in exchange for an internship, $50,000, or a Tesla Model 3.57.
Musk’s plane tracker
Hopefully, nobody expects to get a private message from Musk, but this might happen if you develop a bot that tracks his private flights. This was the case for Jack Sweeney, an IT student that revealed numerous details of the SpaceX CEO’s flights, like that time when his private jet took a nine-minute flight. The Elon Jet account was used to post unnecessary journeys and excessive carbon emissions.
Sweeney’s father was a technician for American Airlines and he learned well. Since Sweeney was a teenager, he developed Twitter bots to track & share the locations of the private planes of numerous public figures like Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, and Jeff Bezos. Other important names the master hacker has information from are Tom Cruise, Kim Kardashian, and several Russian oligarchs.
Jack Sweeney mentioned that Elon Musk offered him $5,000 to buy his account and take it down. Logically, Sweeney demanded an amount of money that could change his life like $50,000 or a Tesla vehicle, and at that moment Musk stopped responding. The truth is that Musk could pay that amount of money, but maybe he realized that buying Twitter would be more strategic due to the figure he is.