Billionaires, Media, and Democracy

Monday June 27, 2022

Be it resolved that Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter is bad for democracy.

Elon Musk may be having second thoughts about buying Twitter, but should we have second thoughts about billionaires buying important media platforms?

  • Arguing for the resolution: Navneet Alang, Toronto Star tech columnist 
  • Arguing against the resolution: Jamil Jivani, author, lawyer, and President of the Canada Strong and Free Network

Whether you love it or hate it, Twitter has turned into an important driver of public opinion and a forum for debate. Is democracy threatened by a single wealthy individual owning a controlling stake in such an influential platform? Is it possible that Musk could make the platform better? Or does it even matter who owns the media?

Musk, after all, isn't the first billionaire to buy a media outlet. Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post, Marc Benioff has Time, and John Henry bought The Boston Globe. Rupert Murdoch, of course, made his fortune in media. Should this be a cause for concern, and what is the impact of this dynamic on our politics and culture?



Anne Gaviola

Senior Digital Broadcast Journalist, Global News
See full bio

Navneet Alang

Toronto Star technology columnist
"No company that is as vital to the functioning of modern societies should even be in a position to be snapped up by a billionaire"
See full bio

Jamil Jivani

Author, lawyer, and President of The Canada Strong and Free Network
"No billionaire is an ideal owner of a company like Twitter, but Elon Musk is far superior to the status quo."
See full bio