According to documents filed in a Delaware court on Thursday, billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, who is attempting to back out of his agreement to acquire Twitter Inc., is in the process of requesting documents from advertising technology firms as part of his quest to gain more information on bot and spam accounts on Twitter.
Twitter has filed a lawsuit against the chief executive of Tesla, who has accused Twitter of withholding information about how it estimates the amount of bots that are using the site. The lawsuit was filed because Tesla attempted to back out of the $44 billion deal.
Musk’s legal team has sent subpoenas to both Integral Ad Science (IAS) and DoubleVerify, requesting any documents or correspondence related to the companies’ role in checking accounts or in any audit of Twitter’s user base.
IAS and DoubleVerify, both of which have their headquarters in New York, utilise technology to do independent verification that digital advertisements are being seen by actual individuals. The services are used by advertisers to increase the likelihood that the advertisements they have paid for will be seen by actual people as opposed to automated bots.
There was no quick response to calls for comment from Twitter, IAS, or DoubleVerify.
Musk wrote in response to a user who questioned how Twitter monitors its service and also linked to a Reuters article on Musk attacking the ad corporations, “Those are the questions that Twitter is doing everything possible to avoid addressing.”
In a countersuit that was filed earlier this month, Musk said that the number of monetizable daily active users on Twitter is 65 million less than what the firm has promoted. Twitter has said that it stands by the disclosures it made.
According to Twitter’s filings, the indicator assesses the number of users who come into Twitter via the website or applications that are able to show advertising or who have utilised paid items such as subscriptions.