- Warren Buffett has previously said Twitter enables rash, cruel communication.
- The Berkshire Hathaway CEO said he doesn't have daily views he wants to share on the platform.
- Elon Musk, set to be Twitter's new owner, specializes in offhand, often critical tweets.
Warren Buffett's main reason for avoiding Twitter underscores a key difference between himself and Elon Musk, who's poised to become the social-media platform's new owner.
"Both email and Twitter really can cause you to stray from that very easily, because if you can just whack out something — it's very easy to tell somebody to go to hell in 10 seconds if you get mad at them," Buffett said.
The Berkshire boss, who has 1.7 million Twitter followers, asserted that instant-communication tools have led to many people saying things they shouldn't have, or firing back too strongly at critics.
"Your first impulse is not necessarily your best course of action," Buffett said. "It really is a mistake to give an instant reaction to everything that comes along."
The investor added that if there was a two-hour delay before tweets were published, many people would have second thoughts about their most egregious posts, and scrap them.
Buffett noted in a CNBC interview in 2018 that he's never personally tweeted, and doesn't know how to look up somebody else's tweets. "But I still feel I've lived a very satisfactory life," he quipped.
The 91-year-old added that he doesn't see a compelling reason to tweet during another CNBC interview later that year. "I do not have a daily view on all kinds of things," he explained.
Buffett's sermon of prudence and restraint strikes a sharp contrast to Musk's casual and impulsive tweeting style. The Tesla CEO, who recently secured the support of Twitter's board for his $44 billion offer to take the company private, has repeatedly gotten into legal trouble for his behavior on the platform.
Moreover, Musk has indicated he will prioritize free speech and loosen content moderation if he takes control of Twitter. That approach could open the door to more of the cruel and thoughtless comments that Buffett has warned against.
On the other hand, Musk's plan to add an edit button could allow Twitter users to soften their language or delete personal insults after tweeting, helping them communicate more carefully.