Elon Musk's courtship of Twitter has been quite similar to the billionaire himself: Brusque is wacky, complex, and ultimately ignored by a larger tech community that initially described his offer as a "dream."
That Musk is almost as savage as Twitter might sell, and the resulting news cycle swirling around any potential deal has sucked most of the oxygen out of the room in the last few weeks.
The first indication that Tesla's chief executive might be interested in the long-beleaguered social media platform came on April 4, when filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission showed Musk had bought a 9.2% share in Twitter.
This leads to a tumultuous activity during which Musk ties from being an active investor to becoming a passive investor, then returning to an active investor again.
Musk has long been a critic of Twitter's free speech practices. A significant donor to the American Civil Liberties Union, he has been at the forefront of debates for years.
His interest in the social media platform immediately harmed users for safety against harassment, and caught the eye of Republicans, who demanded that all of Twitter's communications with Musk be preserved.
During that time, he asked his 83 billion Twitter followers what changes they'd like to see seen at the company, while simultaneously trolling its board of directors by proposing they turn the platform's headquarters into a homeless shelter and remove the "T" from their name.
Musk has also declined to take office on the board. The board then adopted a "poison pill" strategy to avoid a takeover.
Finally, on April 14, he offered what he described as his "best and final" offer for the company of $52.20 per share, or $43 billion.
a week later, he offered a simple strategy for structuring the offer, he created three holding firms through whom he would fund the offer, and merge a subsidiary with Twitter.
It appears that Musk has posed some doubts on Twitter.
What's the difference between Donald Trump and Donald Trump?
Donald Trump, the most historically significant user of Twitter, is Donald Trump.
His use of the platform without warning, and seemingly without intervention from any of his aides or government agencies, leads to a new age in political discourse.
Without a filter, a context, the press testing his statements, or even a media handler, a politician may directly speak to the masses.
Trump was forbidden from Twitter for inciting violence during the riot at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021. The company said his words on the platform prompted direct violent action by his followers, and suspended his account openly.
That sparked Trump's most significant outreach to his supporters and followers, but put the company on the outs with millions of new users, many of whom had included the platform solely to follow the former president or extend their support.
It seemed like it might help solve the propaganda vacuum for a while, but the effort, dubbed Truth Social, sank on the stock market and did nothing to sign up even a fraction of the users it had forecasted.
Elon Musk owns Twitter, but the billionaire's previous statements about speech freedom have many market watchers wondering: Is Donald Trump on course to make a comeback on Twitter?
The Trump Twitter Debt
In some ways, Musk's vigorous defense of free speech has been welcomed by both sides of the aisle.
Many first Amendment rights scholars have agreed that a language that is legal in the United States should be used on the platform without restrictions.
On the back of the agreement, the conversation between parties comes to an end.
When Musk approached them via his Twitter handle in March, 1.4 million of Musk's followers said they did not believe that Twitter protected free speech.
Musk followed up with a tweet requesting, "Given that Twitter serves as the de facto public town square, and that failing to respect free speech fundamentally undermines democracy." What should be done?
The view that Musk might soon be in charge of Twitter and the rules it uses to govern speech on its platform has sent many conservative users, pundits, and lawmakers into a trap.
A group of 18 Republicans wrote a letter on April 22 requesting that Twitter keep all of its communication with Musk about the purchase, many of whom claim the site's prohibition of Trump was unfair and partisan.
As the midterm elections approaches, Twitter begin signaling their priorities, assuming they regain control of the House in November, the move was seen as a warning shot across the bow of Twitter.
Musk has said that Twitter should be "very cautious with persistent bans" and has criticised the left in a number of posts, including stating that "The wake virus is making Netflix unwatchable."
Three things may be weighed on whether Musk will resume his account. One, is he willing to go to court if Trump backs Twitter into hot water? Two, how close to free speech exceptions to the First Amendment, he wants to hew?
On the afternoon of April 25, Twitter approved Musk's offer.