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What Elon Musk's $44 Billion Deal To Buy Twitter Means For Future Of Social Media Platform

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- SpaceX founder Elon Musk will soon add Twitter to his portfolio of companies. Musk on Monday reached an agreement to buy the social media platform. The world's richest man will soon have total control over one of the planet's primary sources of information sharing and it will be his for just $44 billion. Now with this announcement comes cheers and jeers, concern and excitement.

Eyewitness News on Monday night spoke to Temple University professor Jason Thatcher about what this could mean.

"They're getting a celebrity owner, right? This is like having Steve Jobs or Warren Buffet come in and say I believe in the company," Thatcher said. "So what you're going to see, at least in the near term, is a spike in stock market valuation."

Musk plans to privatize Twitter once the sale is complete, and though he's personally blocked journalists who have criticized him on the platform, he's not a fan of banning users like former President Donald Trump or Georgia Congressmember Marjorie Taylor Greene.

"People have been banned," Thatcher said. "Trump is just one illustration, but there are plenty of other people who have been muffled at least in the near term for posting or tweeting things which Twitter deemed unacceptable."

Under Musk, that could change, which is why many on the political right are happy about the news and many on the political left are not.

"We're going to start hearing a lot more from them," Thatcher said, "and it's going to change the conversation as we approach the midterm elections if that's the case. I would be nervous if I was a Democratic strategist."

Musk has also previously said that if a tweet is viewed as offensive -- if it's a gray area -- let the tweet exist. He also calls himself a free speech absolutist. Some worry that means that he won't moderate hate speech.

Elsewhere, he also wants to get rid of bots, which are fake accounts known for amplifying hate speech and he wants to open and share Twitter's algorithm with users.

"Getting that algorithm unveiled, honestly as an academic and as an American, is really exciting," Thatcher said. "Because then I'll actually understand why I'm seeing the content that I'm seeing."

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