Elon Musk, the chief executive of Tesla and SpaceX, is causing quite a stir over a recent tweet.
Yesterday, Elon Musk tweeted out a single word — ‘Ethereum.’ The mysterious tweet garnered more than 100,000 likes at the time of writing.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 30, 2019
In response to the tweet, Vitalik Buterin tweeted at Musk telling him to come to visit the Ethereum Devcon in October. Musk responded humorously, telling Buterin to ‘stop giving away free ETH.’
The joke response to Buterin by Musk relates to the prevalence of scammers in the cryptocurrency space who always claim to be giving away free cryptocurrencies. The number of scammers is so prevalent that Buterin even changed his name to ‘Vitalik Non-giver of Ether’ last year.
The ‘ethereum’ tweet by Musk was followed-up by another: ‘jk.’
The follow-up tweet was likely to prevent Twitter from suspending Musk’s Twitter account again. Musk’s Twitter account has been locked in the past after tweeting about cryptocurrencies. This was because each of his cryptocurrency-related tweets had long been associated with give-away scams in his responses.
Musk has every reason to be cautious, however. He is being closely watched by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) after tweeting his plans to take Tesla private last year. In doing so, the SEC determined he violated an agreement not to tweet confidential information meant to influence stock prices.
In response to that fiasco, the SEC on Friday filed their revised settlement which listed specific topics Musk shouldn’t tweet about. Although it does not contain anything about cryptocurrencies, Musk likely tweeted “jk” just to be safe.
As Bloomberg’s Matt Levin jokingly wrote when the SEC settlement was released:
If I were the SEC I would probably have pushed to add a requirement in the amended settlement to the effect of, if Musk is going to tweet a joke about Tesla, he has to add a smiley face or a “j/k” or a “lol” to the end of it.
However, Musk’s ‘jk’ shouldn’t be taken at face value. He knows full well Ethereum (ETH) is no joke, but is nonetheless cautious about expressing his true views publically on Twitter due to his fear of further backlash by the SEC.
Do you think Musk will ever formally work wither Buterin or other Ethereum developers? Would you consider him an ETH supporter? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.