On May 10, SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell and SpaceX founder & Tesla CEO Elon Musk met with the European Union Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton at Tesla headquarters in Austin, Texas. They discussed Musk's plan to aquire Twitter and the Starlink broadband constellation. "Good to talk with #SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell & Elon Musk on 🇪🇺/🇺🇸 [European Union & United States] common space challenges — including orbit congestion & space-based connectivity 🛰 [satellite]," said Breton via Twitter. He shared photos with Musk and Shotwell at the factory, linked below. "I commend Starlink’s important contribution to connectivity resilience in Ukraine 🇺🇦," Breton said. SpaceX's Starlink satellite internet service has demonstrated to be useful in the war-torn country. Soon after Russia invaded Ukraine earlier this year, SpaceX delivered Starlink user terminals and Tesla power generators to assist Ukrainians.
Good to talk with #SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell & Elon Musk on 🇪🇺/🇺🇸 common space challenges— Thierry Breton (@ThierryBreton) May 10, 2022
— including orbit congestion & space-based #connectivity 🛰
I commend Starlink’s important contribution to connectivity #resilience in Ukraine 🇺🇦#SpaceTrafficManagement pic.twitter.com/2UZUc7DdmR
The Commissioner's main purpose for meeting Musk was to discuss the Digital Services Act. Breton wanted to ensure that Musk's desire to purchase Twitter in the name of 'Free Speech' would not lead to the platform breaking the social media rules of Europe's Digital Services Act, which regulate the internet to ensure that digital platforms can fight against illegal content. The Digital Services Act prohibits illegal activities of the real world from also happening in cyberspace (online). They did not provide much information about what they discussed during their 2-hour meeting. Breton only shared a short video with Musk that said they both agree on how to regulate social media platforms, linked below.
Great meeting! We are very much on the same page.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 9, 2022
Musk was expected to finalize his purchase of Twitter by the end of Aoril, that will cost him $44 billion dollars. However, on Friday, he shared the-"Twitter deal temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users," he wrote in a Tweet. Soon after he announced he would acquire Twitter, he said that he would like all Twitter users to have free speech "within the bounds of the law." Europe plans to ask social media platforms to make their content recommendation algorithms public for regulators to analyze how they use the citizens' data, Musk recently mentioned that he wants to publish Twitter's algorithms publicly as open source information that everyone will be able to access, which aligns with Europe's plans. "Great meeting! We are very much on the same page," Musk told Breton via Twitter.
Featured Image Source: Thierry Breton via Twitter
About the Author
Evelyn Janeidy Arevalo
Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.