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Why Jack Dorsey thought Elon Musk may repair Twitter

Of the numerous weird moments that preceded Twitter’s change in possession, one which’s at all times caught out to me was Jack Dorsey’s that “Elon is the singular resolution I belief.” His insistence that Musk was uniquely positioned to “prolong the sunshine of consciousness” was an odd endorsement, even by Dorsey’s regular weird-guy requirements. However Dorsey had lengthy idolized Musk and the 2 males had a relationship that was far deeper than what many onlookers realized.

That’s based on a brand new guide that explores Jack Dorsey’s function in Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter. Written by Bloomberg reporter Kurt Wagner, tells the story of how Dorsey saved Twitter in 2015 and the way his actions – or usually, lack thereof— led to Musk’s acquisition and, in the end, .

Wagner’s isn’t the primary guide to delve into the tumultuous occasions of the final two years — Musk biographer Walter Isaacson had a seat to the drama — however Battle for the Chicken sheds new gentle on Dorsey’s facet of the equation. “Jack had been bringing Elon to Twitter offsites, he’d visited him at his SpaceX launch facility, the 2 of them type of had this relationship that I do not actually assume individuals paid a lot consideration to,” Wagner tells Engadget. So as soon as Musk started buying a big stake within the firm, “Jack type of stepped in and did what he may” to make the deal occur.

The guide, which started as a Dorsey biography earlier than Musk’s takeover pressured Wagner to alter his plans, focuses on the enigmatic Twitter co-founder whose uncommon administration model generally labored towards the corporate’s personal pursuits.

Inside Twitter, Wagner writes, Dorsey was recognized to “hardly ever communicate” in conferences and disliked making choices. Internally, this was a supply of confusion as executives usually needed to guess what Dorsey was eager about a specific concern. “Individuals could be shocked at how little he was directing [Twitter and Square], he was actually advising them in a bizarre manner,” Wagner says.

These dynamics performed out in Twitter’s product. Wagner experiences that Dorsey had initially inspired the product group to create the characteristic that was finally generally known as “,” Twitter’s experiment with disappearing posts. However Dorsey “grew to despise” the characteristic and publicly cheered when the corporate lower than a yr after its rollout. “Regardless that he thought Fleets was a foul resolution, he by no means stepped in to halt the product or transfer the group in one other route,” Wagner writes.

Battle for the Chicken additionally particulars Dorsey’s many eccentricities: the days-long silent meditation retreats, his affinity for “salt juice” (a mix of water, pink Himalayan sea salt and lemon juice) and his more moderen obsession with bitcoin. “He goes by these phases of his life the place he is completely different, he seems completely different, he acts completely different, his priorities are completely different and I believe it is type of a mirrored image of the issues that he turns into obsessive about,” Wagner says.

Giving Musk a extra influential function at Twitter was one other concept Dorsey fixated on. He tried to get Musk a seat on the corporate’s board in 2020 amid a bruising combat with Elliott Administration. Dorsey managed to maintain his job however did not get Musk a board seat as a result of, based on what he informed Musk, the remainder of the board had been “tremendous danger averse.” (By 2020, Musk had already confronted not less than two main lawsuits over his tweets.)

Dorsey would additionally inform Musk that the board’s veto was “concerning the time I made a decision I wanted to work to depart” the corporate. He had at all times appeared disinterested within the enterprise of working Twitter, however the troubles with Elliott appeared to alter him. “He thought that Twitter served this larger objective … its place on the earth was to not make cash for shareholders,” Wagner explains. “And in consequence, he was simply not likely that fascinated about enjoying the Wall Road recreation, which is an issue while you’re a publicly traded firm.”

So in 2022, after he had stepped down as CEO, Dorsey inspired Musk to make use of his new place as a serious stakeholder in Twitter to handle Twitter’s “unique sin” of present as a company entity beholden to advertisers and political pursuits. Dorsey believed that Musk liked Twitter for a similar causes he did. So when Musk determined to purchase the corporate and take it non-public, he backed Musk.

Dorsey publicly endorsed the transfer and promised to roll over his Twitter shares into the brand new entity, successfully saving Musk about $1 billion. He, together with the remainder of the corporate’s board, voted to approve the deal.

As Wagner factors out in Battle for the Chicken, Dorsey finally on Musk after he tried to again out of the deal, saying “all of it went south.” However by then, Jack Dorsey’s Twitter was already unrecognizable. “He so publicly endorsed this new concept, this takeover from Elon,” Wagner says. “And in consequence, the corporate that he co-founded and led for nearly 16 years in varied methods, is not any extra. X is right here, however Twitter is gone. His legacy has actually been damage by this entire debacle.”

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