Elon Musk will begin layoffs at Twitter, perhaps laying off half of the company’s 7,500 employees
Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter was completed a little more than a week ago; but, as was hypothesized earlier, the self-proclaimed “Chief Twit” will begin firing Twitter staff beginning this coming weekend. At the moment, there are 7,500 people working for Twitter across the globe. The New York Times obtained a copy of an email sent to Twitter employees, in which the company informed them that layoffs would begin on Friday and advised them not to report to work on that day. The email didn’t say anything about how many people the company might lay off.
In the email, it says, “In an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path, we will go through the difficult process of reducing our global workforce.” It has also been stated that Musk will end Twitter’s policy of allowing its employees the flexibility to perform their jobs from any location. At this time, it is unclear whether or not the Twitter employees based in India will also be affected by Musk’s plan to lay off workers.
An image that allegedly depicts a Twitter employee dozing off on the office floor at Twitter HQ has been circulating online recently. According to the image’s caption, it is stated that Musk is forcing staff members to put in extra hours to meet rigorous deadlines and put in 80 hours a week. It is rumored that Elon Musk is collaborating with close coworkers at Tesla and SpaceX to structure the layoff plans and enforce the implementation of new features. These new features include changes to Twitter Blue and hence verification by offering a “blue tick” for $8 to Twitter users, as well as the inclusion of a video paywall that could help creators monetize their content. It is also said that Elon Musk is working on the layoff plans with close colleagues at Tesla and SpaceX.
In addition, Twitter is under pressure from its advertisers, who want to know how CEO and co-founder Elon Musk intends to fulfill his pledges. “Unless Elon hires new leaders committed to keeping this “free” platform safe from hate speech, it’s not a platform brand can or should advertise on,” said Allie Wassum, global director of social and integrated media for Jordan shoes at Nike. Musk has been very vocal about how he feels about the increased verification standards implemented by Twitter. Elon has been quoted as saying, “To all complainers, please continue whining, but it will cost $8.” Later, he went into more detail by saying that Twitter “speaks to the masochist in all of us.”
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (also known as AOC) and Musk engaged in a back-and-forth discussion on Twitter, during which AOC criticized Musk. AOC responded to the statement with a series of tweets, one of which said, “Lmao at a billionaire earnestly attempting to sell people on the concept that “free expression” is actually an $8/mo membership plan.” The response that Musk provided was, “Your comment is appreciated; now pay $8.”