Twitter may never be the same again

by | Apr 26, 2022

This post is a delayed version of Techpoint Digest, a week-daily newsletter that rounds up major happenings in African tech. You can start receiving it hours before everyone else if you subscribe now

Hello there,

Did you know Elon Musk, the richest man in the world — according to Forbes — founded, co-founded, or currently leads Neuralink, SpaceX, The Boring Company, Tesla Inc., and PayPal? 

Nonetheless, I’m curious why he, a frequent Twitter user, would wake up one morning and say to himself, “I want to acquire Twitter.”

I was kidding. Maybe he didn’t just wake up and say all of that. 😆 Remember when Musk wanted to launch a social media platform where users could write whatever they wanted? Some people did not want that but asked him to purchase Twitter.

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Anyway, one of the reasons he wanted to buy the platform is that he believes Twitter needs to go private to grow and become a genuine free speech platform.

Also, he stated that he wants to combat trolls on Twitter and proposed changes to the Twitter Blue premium subscription service, such as lowering the price and banning advertising and adding Dogecoin as a payment option on Twitter.

Interestingly, it appears he began considering the idea in 2017 when he declared his love for Twitter in a tweet. A Twitterer replying asked him to buy it, and Musk enquired about the price.

Well, before we go to today’s gist, I’ll be discussing: 

  • Elon Musk takes over Twitter
  • Verifying credentials through blockchain

TABS Web3 Hackathon 2022: $2,500 in cash prizes to be won

tabs hackathon prize 600x400 1

The Techpoint Africa Blockchain Summit is dedicated to making sense of the Web3 buzz, but we also want to reward Web3 solutions. Do you have a Web-based solution for Africa? Register for TABS Web3 Hackathon here.

Also, you can register for the event here.

Elon Musk takes over Twitter 

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The Twitter-Musk drama, which began with Tesla CEO, Elon Musk purchasing a 9.2 percent stake in Twitter, has seemingly ended.

Why? Twitter announced yesterday, April 25, 2022, that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by an entity wholly owned by Musk for $54.20 per share in cash in an approximately $44 billion transaction. 

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Essentially, Twitter will become a privately held company after the transaction is completed.

Recall that Twitter initially implemented a poison pill strategy that could thwart a takeover attempt by making it too expensive. 

Remember this? Who will take the poison pill? It appears Twitter has literally swallowed its poison pill by negotiating with Musk. 

Per The New York Times, Musk met with Twitter’s board of directors in the early hours of Monday, April 25, 2022, to discuss his unsolicited bid to purchase the company. 

But why’d Twitter accept Musk’s offer even with the poison pill in place? Unfortunately — or fortunately, depending on who you ask — the company was under intense pressure from its shareholders to reach an agreement with Musk.

The Twitter board reportedly met on Sunday, April 24, 2022, to discuss Musk’s offer after outlining a detailed financing plan for his bid on Thursday, April 21, 2022. The financing plan is believed to have changed the board’s perception of Musk’s $54.20 per share offer.

Recall that Musk stated in a tweet that if his bid is successful, he will defeat spambots and authenticate all real humans. 

Will you continue to use the app now that the bid appears to be a done deal, even as we wait for the new Twitter owner to fulfill his promises? Please leave your comment in the comments section.

African startups that have gone through Y Combinator Accelerator Programme

YC intelligence by Techpoint

Over the years, African startups are becoming an important part of Y Combinator’s (YC) accelerator programme since the first startup from the continent participated in the Winter 2009 cohort. Since then, 95 companies have participated as of the Winter 2022 launch, about half of which are financial services providers, and 51 are from Nigeria.

Techpoint Africa’s data and research arm, Intelligence by Techpoint, has partnered with YC to examine the impact of the California-based startup accelerator on the continent. The report will be released soon. Get it directly in your inbox by subscribing to the Intelligence by Techpoint newsletter here.

Verifying credentials through blockchain

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Business photo created by pvproductions – www.freepik.com

Fake credentials have become a worldwide issue. Per the National Student Clearinghouse, a US NGO that provides a degree verification service, falsified academic credentials are a serious, prevalent, and ever-increasing problem.

There is also a growing concern in Africa about the proliferation of low-quality — if not entirely bogus — universities and colleges. For example, in Benin, a West African country, some unscrupulous Benin-based operators are preying on gullible Nigerians by offering them fake degrees, resulting in fake credentials.

In South Africa, the use of forged credentials is becoming more common. The number of fraudulent qualifications reported to regulatory bodies like the South African Qualifications Authority increased significantly in 2018.

So, to reduce the occurrences of fraud and fake documentation, South Africa believes that blockchain is the way forward. Consequently, the University of Johannesburg (UJ) announced that it would begin issuing blockchain-based certificates to students who graduate from the institute this year.

What does this imply? UJ is leading the way in South African education by issuing degrees and other certifications that can be verified using blockchain technology.

Why? The authenticity of blockchain-based certificates makes certificate fraud virtually impossible, but it also allows anyone to check its authenticity by simply scanning a QR code printed on the certificate.

What’s more, the new blockchain-based certificates will not only protect the university’s certificates from fraud but will also protect the institution’s reputation and qualification integrity.

While you’re wondering how this would work, I believe you can guess what I will do next. Haha! I’m not a blockchain enthusiast like Bolu. If this is your first or second time reading Techpoint Digest, Techpoint Africa’s newsletter, I believe you should meet Bolu, our blockchain go-to person.

Bolu provided some interesting insights in today’s episode of the Techpoint Africa Podcast. Please take a moment to listen to it here.

Also, if you’re still unsure about the blockchain concept or want to make a career out of it and don’t know how to begin, I believe the Tecpoint Africa Blockchain Summit is for you. The event will take place on Saturday, May 21, 2022, at Four Points by Sheraton, Victoria Island, Lagos. You can register to attend here.

And if you’re a Blockchain enthusiast looking to win up to $2,500 in cash prizes, I’m sure you don’t want to miss out on this one: TABS Web3 Hackathon 2022: $2,500 in cash prizes to be won.

What I’m reading and watching

Opportunities

  • Applications are open for women-led or women-impact tech innovators based in Kenya, Ethiopia and Nigeria. Apply for the WIITPitch competition here.
  • NowNow Digital Systems Limited is hiring a Growth Lead, SME Digital and Growth Lead, Consumer Digital. Apply here and here.
  • Want to have access to resources to help you thrive on YouTube and build careers on your own terms. Apply for the YouTube Foundry Global Development programme here.
  • Are you an entrepreneur and early-stage startup founder? Apply for the e-Track programme here.
  • Nestcoin is hiring an Associate UX Researcher. Apply here

Have a splendid Tuesday!

Victoria Fakiya for Techpoint Africa.

Victoria Fakiya
Victoria Fakiya

A writer with ADHD who is interested in mental health and how technology is improving the lives of Africans with mental disorders.


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