Elon Musk Says His Deal to Buy Twitter Is 'Temporarily on Hold' Due to Spam Accounts Statistic

Elon Musk says he's pausing his Twitter purchase "pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users"

Elon Musk attends TIME Person of the Year on December 13, 2021 in New York City.
Elon Musk. Photo: Theo Wargo/Getty

Elon Musk's $44 billion Twitter deal may take a little longer to finalize than he originally anticipated.

The Tesla and SpaceX CEO retweeted a Reuters article Friday that reported the social media platform's Monday filing had found that "false or spam accounts represented fewer than 5% of its monetizable daily active users during the first quarter."

In his retweet, Musk, 50, said his purchase is now "temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users."

"Still committed to acquisition," he wrote in a follow-up post.

Twitter did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

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In April, Twitter announced it had "entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by an entity wholly owned by Elon Musk, for $54.20 per share in cash in a transaction valued at approximately $44 billion. Upon completion of the transaction, Twitter will become a privately held company."

In his own statement, Musk called Twitter "the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated," adding that he planned to enhance the platform with his takeover.

"I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans," he said in the statement. "Twitter has tremendous potential — I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it."

The transaction, which was unanimously approved by Twitter's board, is expected to close in 2022 — though the terms of the deal could still change.

RELATED VIDEO: Twitter Co-Founder Jack Dorsey on Elon Musk's New Ownership: "This Is the Right Path"

Earlier this week, Musk said that if his deal to acquire Twitter goes through as planned, he will reverse the permanent ban against former President Donald Trump that was put in place following the riots at the U.S. Capitol.

Speaking at FT Live's Future of the Car conference Tuesday, Musk said the ban on Trump's verified account was a "mistake" and that he would "reverse" it if he owned the social-media platform.

"Permanent bans should be extremely rare and really reserved for accounts that are bots, or scam, spam accounts … I do think it was not correct to ban Donald Trump," Musk said, according to a CNBC report. "I think that was a mistake, because it alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice."

Musk was quick to note, however, that he hasn't yet acquired Twitter. "I would reverse the permanent ban," he added. "I don't own Twitter yet. So this is not like a thing that will definitely happen, because what if I don't own Twitter?"

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