Elon Musk throws punches over "cheating" and threatens lawsuit as Threads takes off

San Francisco, California – Twitter threatened to sue Meta just hours after the Instagram parent company launched Threads, an app it hopes will beat out the struggling site owned by Elon Musk.

Twitter CEO Elon Musk is clearly not happy with the launch of Meta's new rival app Threads.
Twitter CEO Elon Musk is clearly not happy with the launch of Meta's new rival app Threads.  © IMAGO / Cover-Images

Elon Musk is clearly not happy on Threads launch day.

In a letter to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, published by online news outlet Semafor on Thursday, Musk lawyer Alex Spiro accused the company of "unlawful misappropriation of Twitter's trade secrets and other intellectual property."

The letter accused Meta of hiring dozens of former Twitter employees who "had and continue to have access to Twitter's trade secrets and other highly confidential information."

A Twitter post revealing news of the letter was responded to by Musk, who wrote, "Competition is fine, cheating is not."

Threads is highly anticipated and the biggest challenger yet to Musk-owned Twitter, which has seen a series of potential competitors emerge but not yet replace one of the world's biggest social media platforms, despite its recent struggles.

Zuckerberg's latest move against Musk further heightened the rivalry between the two multibillionaires, who have even agreed to meet for hand-to-hand combat in a cage match.

Musk also threw more punches at Zuckerberg on Thursday, replying to a tweet that highlighted Zuck's early day musings and agreeing with a user who compared the new Threads logo to a tapeworm.

What is Meta Threads and who is using it?

Twitter and Threads are going head-to-head.
Twitter and Threads are going head-to-head.  © IMAGO / Christian Ohde

Threads went live on Apple and Android app stores in 100 countries on Wednesday, and early feedback noted its close, but scaled back, resemblance to Twitter.

Within its first few hours, more than 30 million people had downloaded Threads, Zuckerberg said Thursday.

"Feels like the beginning of something special, but we've got a lot of work ahead to build the app," Zuckerberg wrote on his official Threads account Thursday.

Accounts were already active for celebrities such as Olivia Rodrigo, Jennifer Lopez, Shakira, and Hugh Jackman, to name a few.

On Threads, Zuckerberg wrote: "It'll take some time, but I think there should be a public conversations app with 1 billion+ people on it."

Twitter has said it has more than 200 million daily users.

Cover photo: IMAGO / Cover-Images

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