E69: Elon Musk on Twitter’s Bot Problem, SpeceX’s Grand Plan, Tesla Stories, Giga Texas & more | All-In with Chamath, Jason, Sacks & Friedberg

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Key Takeaways

  • Elon Musk has the most liked tweet (4.7 million likes) of any human on Twitter: “Next I’m buying Coca-Cola to put the cocaine back in”
    • Twitter claims to have 217 million monetizable daily active users, so why is the most popular tweet only around 2% of the entire user base? Could the bot population be substantially more?
  • Elon says that Twitter’s refusal or inability to provide data on the bot population is holding up the deal
    • “The more questions I ask, the more my concerns grow” – Elon Musk
    • Much of Twitter’s revenue is tied to brand advertising, which relies upon an honest communication of active users. If that number is in fact less, it could impact Elon’s bid.
  • Free speech matters most when somebody you don’t like says something you don’t like
    • “I don’t have the ability to stop the media from trashing me, and that’s a good thing” – Elon Musk
  • “If you care about life on earth, you should really care about life becoming multi-planetary and ultimately multi-stellar. Otherwise, you’re signing the death warrant for life as we know it.” – Elon Musk
    • Fossil records show that there have been five major extinctions where 80-90% of all creatures on earth died—it can happen again.
  • The entire United States could be powered by a 100×100 mile territory of solar production
  • The worldwide declining birth rate “is the biggest single threat to civilization” – Elon Musk
  • “How responsive is any political party going to be to the people if they are guaranteed to win?” – Elon Musk
    • For every state to be dedicated to the people it serves, there must be an above 0% chance that either (any) party could win
  • If economic booms last too long, you start to get misallocation of capital
    • “It starts raining money on fools” – Elon Musk
    • In Elon’s opinion, we have entered a recession and it will get worse over the next 12 to 18 months

Intro

  • Bestie Guestie Elon Musk (@elonmusk) joins the All-In Summit to discuss his ongoing negotiations with Twitter, the future of civilization, the current state of the economy, and much more!
  • Hosts: Chamath Palihapitiya (@chamath), Jason Calacanis (@Jason), David Sacks (@DavidSacks) & David Friedberg (@friedberg)
  • Check out more Podcast Notes with Elon Musk

How Many Twitter Bots Are There?

  • “Appreciate you zooming into the event, what’s new in your world?” – Jason Calacanis
  • “Well right now I’m debating the number of bots on Twitter with Parag on Twitter” – Elon Musk
  • Twitter claims that 95% of its user base is a unique and legit—which Elon proceeds to laugh hysterically at
    • Elon’s low estimate of bots on Twitter is 20%
  • Elon has the most liked tweet (4.7 million likes) of any human on Twitter: “Next I’m buying Coca-Cola to put the cocaine back in”
    • Twitter claims to have 217 million monetizable daily active users, so why is the most popular tweet only around 2% of the entire user base? Could the bot population be substantially more?
    • YouTube has a view/user ratio that makes a lot more sense
  • Much of Twitter’s revenue derives from brand advertising, you can’t directly measure the outcome
    • This is a very faith-based transaction. If the number of bots is much greater than what Twitter public filings state, advertisers might look to pull out, which would severely impair revenue.
    • This knowledge could influence Elon’s purchase price and overall bid
  • Elon says that Twitter’s refusal or inability to provide data on the bot population is holding up the deal
    • “The more questions I ask, the more my concerns grow” – Elon Musk
    • Don’t go ask questions for things you don’t want the answer to? Maybe that’s how Twitter has been handling the bot problem.

Why Buy Twitter?

  • “I think there’s a need for a digital public town square where people can debate issues of all kinds” – Elon Musk
    • In order to do this, you have to be as broadly inclusive as possible
    • Politically balanced, non-biased, and has a transparent algorithm on GitHub
  • “Twitter, at this point, has a very far-left bias” – Elon Musk
    • Elon classifies himself as a moderate but has voted ‘overwhelmingly’ democrat in his past
    • “This is not some right-wing takeover as people on the left may fear, but rather a moderate wing takeover” – Elon Musk
  • Neither political party is a representative of the people
    • The democratic party is overly controlled by the unions and class-action lawyers
    • The republican party’s flaws come in the form of corporate evil and religious zealotry
  • Free speech matters most when somebody you don’t like says something you don’t like
    • But, this is a good sign that you have free speech
    • “I don’t have the ability to stop the media from trashing me, and that’s a good thing” – Elon Musk

Tesla Doesn’t Just Make Cars

  • Service and Sales: Traditional car companies outsource their service and sales to dealerships, Tesla does not
  • Charging Network: You can travel anywhere in America right now with the Tesla supercharger network, which has over 15,000 stations globally
  • Vertical Integration: Tesla is so vertically integrated because they can innovate faster than the supply chains can keep up with
    • “When you inherit the legacy supply chain, you inherit the legacy constraints” – Elon Musk
  • Technology: Tesla is as much a software company as it is a hardware company
  • Insurance: Tesla insurance is entirely based on how you drive, not how your demographic drives

SpaceX

  • The goal of SpaceX is to enable multi-planetary life
    • “Life can’t be about solving one miserable problem after another, it’s gotta be inspiring and exciting. And I think that a future where we are a space-bearing civilization is one that we can all get excited about.” – Elon Musk
  • Where are the aliens and are they friendly 
    • Elon says he’ll be the first to tweet about it if he finds any aliens
  • SpaceX doesn’t need government funding, but it would certainly be helpful
    • Will be funneling profits from Starlink and other companies into this funding
  • “If you care about life on earth, you should really care about life becoming multi-planetary and ultimately multi-stellar. Otherwise, you’re signing the death warrant for life as we know it.” – Elon Musk
    • The sun is expanding and will eventually boil the oceans and make Earth inhabitable
    • Fossil records show that there have been five major extinctions where 80-90% of all creatures on earth died—it’s going to happen again
    • We could also beat nature to the punch if we decide to destroy ourselves in a nuclear world war
  • Check out the Podcast Notes from Elon’s most recent appearance on the Lex Fridman Podcast, where they go in-depth on the future of SpaceX and establishing a multi-planetary presence

Sustainability & Civilization

  • “Why bother creating fusion on Earth when we have a gigantic fusion reactor in the sky that just works with zero maintenance and it shows up every day” – Elon Musk
    • The economic viability of fusion energy is much less than that of solar and wind
  • The entire United States could be powered by a 100×100 mile territory of solar production
    • We could have a civilization that is 100x more energy-intensive than it currently is
  • But, who knows if we need the energy capacity, birth rates worldwide are on the decline
    • When urbanization, income, and education hit certain levels, birth rates tend to drop
    • “This is the biggest single threat to civilization” – Elon Musk
  • Having kids is not bad for the environment, it’s essential to maintaining civilization
    • Historically speaking, there’s no safer time to bring a child into the world than now

Giga Texas

  • Giga Texas is the biggest factory in North America and possibly the world—it’s 3x bigger than the Pentagon
    • “It’s so big, it’s weird” – Elon Musk
  • Definition of manufacturing competitiveness: economies of scale & technology

California

  • “How responsive is any political party going to be to the people if they are guaranteed to win?” – Elon Musk
    • For anything to change in California, there has to be an above 0% chance that Republicans can win the state

Economy

  • If economic booms last too long, you start to get misallocation of capital
    • “It starts raining money on fools” – Elon Musk
  • In Elon’s opinion, we have entered a recession and it will get worse over the next 12 to 18 months
    • All things pass and boom times will come again
  • The true economy is the output of goods and services, not money
    • Money is simply a means for transaction convenience and to shift obligations in time
  • “If the federal government writes checks, they never bounce. That is effectively the creation of more dollars.” – Elon Musk
    • Venezuela is a prime example of what happens when the government lets the deficit run the people into the ground

Other Elon Quotes

  • “My default inclination is to start things from scratch” – Elon Musk
  • “Both SpaceX and Tesla in 2008, if we had simply paid our suppliers on time, we would have gone bankrupt immediately” – Elon Musk
  • “There’s a lot of innovations at Tesla besides the stuff that is obvious” – Elon Musk
  • “I have a habit of biting off more than I can chew and just sitting there with chipmunk cheeks” – Elon Musk
  • “It’s hard to tell what Biden is doing, to be totally frank. The real president is whoever controls the teleprompter. The path to power is the path to the teleprompter” – Elon Musk
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Notes By Drew Waterstreet

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