Elon Musk wanted to buy Twitter. He then decided not to.
Bob Iger can relate.
In 2016, Disney CEO Iger believed his company should own Twitter because it would be a great way to distribute Disney content around the world. Then, just before the 2016 US presidential election, he bailed out.
Iger has told parts of this story before, but he always seemed confused to me.. on Twitter.
Really? Isn’t the discomfort immediately apparent to anyone who has used the service in the slightest, let alone anyone prepared to spend billions on it?
But today, in response to a question from Alex Heath of The Verge, I got a longer version of this story told by Iger at the Code Conference. In it, Iger says that while Twitter would have been a “wonderful” distribution platform for his Disney, it would have caused too many headaches. Among them are bots. (Familiar, right?)
Here are Iger’s own words:
“We were going to get into the streaming business. We needed a technology solution. We have all this amazing IP. …and we were kicking our tires left and right, we thought we would grow ourselves, $500 million in 5 years, the world was changing fast So it was time, not money.At the same time, there were reports that Twitter was considering selling.
“We immediately went into the process and saw Twitter as the solution, the global distribution platform. It was seen as a kind of social network. , sports, entertainment, [and] reach the world. Frankly, it was a phenomenal solution when it came to distros.
“We then sold the entire concept to the Disney board and Twitter board, ready to execute. rice field. I’m not looking at this as closely as I should be looking at it. Yes, it’s a good solution from a distribution point of view. But it also comes with many other challenges and complexities, so as a manager of a great global brand, be prepared to deal with major distractions and situations you’ve never faced before. I wasn’t able to do it.
“Interestingly, I was reading the news recently, and we looked very carefully at all Twitter users: Are they called users? With some help, I estimated that a good portion, but not the majority, was not real.
“I don’t remember the numbers, but we got a big discount. But it was baked into our economics. In fact, the deals we had were pretty cheap.”
“Of course, we all need to look at hate speech and its potential to do as much harm as it does good. We are in the business of making fun at Disney. This is something we weren’t ready to take on, and as the company’s CEO, I wasn’t ready to take it on, so I thought it was irresponsible.