This Week on Crypto Twitter: Musk’s Polarizing Twitter Takeover

Illustration by Mitchell Preffer for Decrypt

This week crypto finally appeared to be out of the woods, although one can never be too sure in this industry. As crypto prices continued to climb for the second week running, Elon Musk’s tumultuous Twitter takeover also entered its second week. 

Many in crypto see the Tesla CEO’s new acquisition to be a good thing; after all, he’s bullish on Dogecoin and owns millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin through Tesla—but speculation that Twitter would be pivoting to crypto under his stewardship was just that: speculation, until this week, when Binance and Andreessen Horowitz pitched their tents in Camp Musk. 

Read on to find out all the latest developments about the most controversial takeover of the year. 

Twitter, but Web3  

On Tuesday, Musk tweeted a picture of a dog in a Twitter T-shirt. Dogecoin pumped hard in response. 

 That day, Musk again proposed the idea of charging users $8 a month for verified accounts. Several people connected the dots. 

Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao engaged with the idea and told CNBC that plans for a paid subscription could be “done very easily, globally, using cryptocurrencies as a means of payment.” Zhao also spoke about Binance’s $500 million contribution to the takeover, saying crypto needs “a space at the table when it comes to free speech.” 

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin joined the discussion to say that he believes in Musk’s subscription model, but that those applying for the blue tick would need to undergo a thorough vetting. 

Sriram Krishnan, a general partner at venture capital giant Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) shared a photo to his followers from Twitter’s San Francisco office. For those who don’t know, a16z is a major investor in blockchain, Web3 and other emerging technologies. 

Michael Saylor, the executive chairman of cloud software company MicroStrategy—the single biggest institutional Bitcoin whale—chipped in his two cents. 

Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko, however, was not one of Musk’s Yes Men this week. He thinks Musk is wrong to blame civilian activist groups for endangering free speech. 

 The other side of the Dogecoin

For many people, Musk’s takeover was all fun and games until the mass layoffs started. Images of a formal letter announcing impending layoffs made the rounds early on Friday. 

A few minutes later, New York Times tech reporter Kate Conger shared another official missive announcing the firings. 

Lawyer Lisa Bloom reported a lot of backlash from Twitter employees. She said that Musk’s layoffs are illegal both under federal law and in the state of California, where employers are required to give 60 days notice. 

One former Twitter employee shared his shocking story. 

The best of the rest. 

United States Securities and Exchange Commission chief Gary Gensler, aka the Sheriff of Cryptoville, shared a birthday message for Bitcoin. Gensler believes that pretty much all cryptocurrencies are securities, however he previously singled out Bitcoin as a commodity, which means he’s granted the world’s favorite cryptocurrency immunity, from himself. 

Circle’s director of European Strategy and Policy, Patrick Hansen, on Tuesday shared an important announcement about the European Union’s landmark new crypto legislation package, which will be getting enforced if it passes a final vote by the European Parliament in February. 

 On Wednesday, an account called @TheSkyhopper tallied up the damage caused by the industry’s recent liquidity issues, which started early this summer in the wake of Terra’s collapse

Crypto blogger Eric Wall said on Friday that if Michael Saylor’s MicroStrategy had invested the $3.98 billion it spent on Bitcoin into Ethereum instead, it would be way up, as opposed to where its investment actually is right now, currently underwater

South Korean authorities can void Do Kwon’s passport; they can issue him with an arrest warrant for allegedly violating capital market rules, but the thirty-one-year-old Terra CEO and co-founder wants them and every other enforcer on the planet to know that he’s not losing any sleep. 

Finally, Facebook’s metaverse pivot is umm… going really well… 

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