Elon Musk claims he’s not worried about the FTC, but he should be

By | December 26, 2022

Mike Masnick writes:

Soon after Elon took over Twitter and fired everyone, we wondered (somewhat jokingly) if there was anyone left at the company who was aware of the FTC’s consent decree with the company, signed originally in 2011, but which runs for 30 years, and which was updated back in May of 2022. These documents have some fairly strict requirements for the company around protecting the privacy of its users, and also limiting employees access to certain data.

A recent Washington Post article that is mainly about Musk’s actions over the past two months has destroyed his reputation among many who previously were impressed by him includes two tidbits about Musk and the FTC that suggest he’s in for a world of hurt when the agency takes action.

First, while I was kind of joking about not knowing about the consent decree, the article makes it abundantly clear that Musk not only wasn’t aware of the consent decree when he agreed to purchase Twitter, but he still seemed unaware of it after taking over the company:

When one executive met with Musk and voiced concerns about the Federal Trade Commission’s consent decree, Musk assured that person there was nothing to worry about. He said Tesla had plenty of experience on privacy matters, and pointed to his deep knowledge and awareness of the constraints Twitter was under.

Minutes after the meeting concluded, a subordinate of Musk emailed: Would the executive be willing to send over a copy of the consent decree they had just discussed?

Both of these paragraphs should be seen as mindblowing. [Continue reading…]

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