I wonder what a “monetizable” user is? Probably someone who views ads in the app, right?

My guess is most bots aren’t interfacing with a Twitter client at all, just a command prompt, so would they even be considered “monetizable”?

I don't know how it actually works, but I would guess it is something like this:

For the promoted Tweets, advertisers have specific criteria. So if an account doesn't meet the criteria of any advertisers, then that's not an account that gets "monetized".

Accounts with bots do have recent logins, accounts with bots do have locations, accounts with bots do have keywords in what is posted, etc.

But yes -- the viewing of tweets, where the promoted ads are shown, is probably minimal with those accounts with bots, and the advertisers probably know very well to avoid paying to those accounts.

So a bot account might not be in their 229M "monetizable" count, even though it persists on their platform. And thus wouldn't be something they cheated on because they only report monetizable users. That's probably a contributing reason why they aren't more aggressive about bots, ... they don't exist, looking through only a revenue lens.

This man plays 4-D chess!

He had to know that the fake and bot accounts had to be way higher than 5% of the 229M "monetizable" users.

After signalling the ax for staff and the end of non-transparent censorship, a bunch of employees have left or have already started job hunting. He didn't have to spend a dime and half his problem with Twitter is already being resolved!

So now the market tanks, Musk has this 5% issue (which would likely end up interesting to the SEC, since the estimate was made after the buyout deal was reached) and uses it to get a great discount on the price, ... or maybe walks away and lets Twitter crumble in the vacuum left after buyout collapse, and he gets to put in a stink bid down the road.

Yes, this is standard "good negotiating" tactics: Get the other party to commit in principle, then negotiate price.

He's both backed the board into a corner and started clearing out dissenters simultaneously, therefore they are now under pressure to sell at any reasonable price. Given the market downturn - and continued weakness going forward - this provides a movable discount he can press.

Furthermore, there is no reason why he can't claim that those "5%" bots should equal a 10-20% discount, since those bots by their nature have an outsized impact on the platform (ie. real people may only post 1 tweet per week, however most bots are voracious posters)

Frankly speaking, the "best" outcome would be for us to not have a single twitter at all, but instead transform twitter into just-another-mastodon-node

Twitter has no incentive to tear down their walls, so I don't think that will happen without new owners wanting that strategy and willing to endure turning that lumbering ship.

I check in occasionally to see how nostr is progressing. I suspect that'll be what supplants Twitter, but no idea how long that might take. Network effects are strong.

An article on CoinDesk:

Twitter's estimates that less than 5% of the accounts on the site are spam or fake, according to a SEC filing. Twitter's share price were down over 20% at $35.8 in pre-market trading.

Elon Musk Puts Twitter Takeover on Hold Till Spam Account Calculation is Done https://www.coindesk.com/business/2022/05/13/elon-musk-puts-twitter-takeover-on-hold-till-spam-account-calculation-is-done https://archive.ph/rRiCu <-- An archive of the article, which can be easier to read

An article in Reuters describing where the 5% number came from:

Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) estimated in a filing on Monday that false or spam accounts represented fewer than 5% of its monetizable daily active users during the first quarter.

The social media company had 229 million users who were served advertising in the first quarter.

Twitter estimates spam, fake accounts comprise less than 5% of users -filing https://www.reuters.com/technology/twitter-estimates-spam-fake-accounts-represent-less-than-5-users-filing-2022-05-02 https://archive.ph/nGEzI <-- An archive of the article, which can be easier to read