Elon Musk has said that his bid to buy Twitter is “temporarily on hold” after the social network revealed that bogus or spam accounts accounted for fewer than 5% of its 226 million monetizable daily active users. Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted a link to a May 2 Reuters piece on Twitter’s filing, stating that he wanted to see the company’s calculations.

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“Twitter deal temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users,” Musk tweeted.

As of this writing, Twitter’s stock had down 19% on the news, while Tesla’s was up 5%.

The relevant section of Twitter’s submission is provided below. It acknowledges that its estimations about the number of fraudulent or spam accounts are an “estimate,” and that the true figure “could be higher than we have estimated.”

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“We have performed an internal review of a sample of accounts and estimate that the average of false or spam accounts during the first quarter of 2022 represented fewer than 5% of our mDAU during the quarter. The false or spam accounts for a period represent the average of false or spam accounts in the samples during each monthly analysis period during the quarter. In making this determination, we applied significant judgment, so our estimation of false or spam accounts may not accurately represent the actual number of such accounts, and the actual number of false or spam accounts could be higher than we have estimated,” the filing read.

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In the past, Twitter has had issues with math. It admitted in an earnings report a few weeks ago that it had overcounted its daily users for three years in a row. According to the corporation, a technical issue caused it to identify numerous accounts as active, despite the fact that they were related to a single user, and this resulted in it miscounting its user numbers by up to 1.9 million each quarter.

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Musk has emphasised reducing the number of “spam and scam bots” and “bot armies” on Twitter a key component of his case for upgrading the site, along with emphasising free speech and open-sourcing the platform’s ranking algorithms.

Putting the acquisition on hold is the latest setback in Musk’s attempt to take control of the social media network. The corporation first declared a “poison pill” measure to thwart the purchase before ultimately accepting the buyout in late April.