Musk targets ad tech firms in Twitter lawsuit over takeover deal

Musk targets ad tech firms in Twitter lawsuit over takeover deal

Elon Musk photo, Twitter logos and US dollar banknotes are seen in this illustration, August 10, 2022. Portal/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

Aug 18 (Portal) – Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, who is trying to walk away from his deal to acquire Twitter Inc (TWTR.N), is looking for documents from advertising technology companies to learn more about bots and spam accounts Twitter, according to filings with a Delaware court on Thursday.

Twitter has sued the Tesla boss, who has accused Twitter of hiding information about how it calculates the percentage of bots on the service, for trying to walk away from the $44 billion deal. A trial is scheduled for October 17. read more

Musk’s attorneys have subpoenaed both Integral Ad Science (IAS) (IAS.O) and DoubleVerify (DV.N) for documents or communications regarding their involvement in account verification or participation in an audit of Twitter’s user base.

IAS and DoubleVerify, both based in New York, use technology to independently verify that digital ads are being viewed by real people. Advertisers use the Services to ensure that the ads they pay for are seen by potential customers and not automated bots.

Twitter, IAS and DoubleVerify did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

In response to a tweet from a user questioning how Twitter audits its service, and also linking to a Portal story about Musk targeting the advertisers, Musk tweeted, “These are the questions Twitter is dying to answer.” trying to avoid…”

In a counterclaim earlier this month, Musk claimed that Twitter’s monetizable daily active users are 65 million fewer than what the company touted. Twitter has said it stands by its disclosures.

The metric measures users who subscribe to Twitter through the website or apps that can serve ads, or paid products such as subscriptions, according to Twitter submissions.

Reporting by Sheila Dang in Dallas; Edited by Leslie Adler and Deepa Babington

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