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Musk "assist"? The attorney general of The state of Texas has opened an investigation into fake Twitter users

via:新浪科技     time:2022/6/7 10:00:44     readed:126

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Monday local time that his department will investigate the number of Twitter bot accounts.

"Attorney General Paxton issued a civil subpoena to investigate whether Twitter's reporting of its real and fake users violated the 'false, misleading and deceptive' provisions of the Texas Fraudulent Trade Practices Act," the Texas Attorney General's office said in a statement.

Paxton asked for detailed information on 23 issues, including comprehensive data on Twitter's daily active users, monthly active users and commercialized active users. He also asked for adequate documentation on the number of fake Twitter accounts for each month so far in 2017, broken down by categories of fake accounts (fake accounts, spam accounts, and bot accounts).

Mr Paxton, who was backed by former President Donald Trump, himself faced securities fraud charges seven years ago but has yet to stand trial.

The same day he announced the Twitter probe, Elon Musk, Tesla's chief executive, threatened through his lawyers that he might withdraw from his $44 billion acquisition deal over concerns about fake accounts.

In an email to Twitter that day, Musk's lawyer said musk had access to Twitter's data to help determine the number of bot accounts on the platform. The letter said Twitter was in "clear and material breach" of the terms of the acquisition agreement by "denying and obstructing" Mr Musk's access to the information.

Marc Fagel, a former regional director of the San Francisco office of the Securities and Exchange Commission and an expert on securities law, said Mr Paxton's statement was unusual because such issues are typically handled by the FEDERAL government.

"States are not necessarily equipped to handle this kind of complex investigation." 'If you're dealing with a local company, that's fine, but if it's a national public company from another state, that's the S.E.C.' s job, 'Mr. Fagre said.

Musk moved Tesla's headquarters from Palo Alto, Calif., to Austin, Texas, last year and opened a large factory in Austin this year. He himself moved to Texas in 2020.

Musk's rocket company SpaceX also has a large manufacturing and launch facility in Brownsville, Texas, and hopes to continue expanding its operations there after receiving approval from the FEDERAL Aviation Commission.

In addition to moving operations to Texas, Mr. Musk has recently become a defender of many conservatives for his criticism of Twitter. Twitter has previously blocked many conservatives, including Mr. Trump. Musk also said last month that he would vote for the Republican party in the upcoming election.

Mr Musk has 96.8 million followers on Twitter, where he regularly criticises Joe Biden, the current US President, and Democrats.

Twitter has so far declined to comment on Paxton's investigation.

While Musk clearly regrets buying Twitter, some Twitter shareholders don't want him to walk away from the deal. They filed a lawsuit against Mr Musk in California to ensure he could close the deal at $54.20 a share.

Twitter shares fell 1.49 percent to close at $39.56 in regular trading Monday on the Nasdaq Stock Market.

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