Twitter temporarily closed its offices as more employees left the struggling social media giant, prompting warnings about the site’s ability to remain online during the World Cup.
The company decided to close its doors until Monday, apparently because of concerns that departing employees could “destroy” the business.
The latest turmoil comes after hundreds of workers were turned down New boss Elon Musk’s ultimatum Sign up for longer, more intense hours to build a new “extremely hardcore” Twitter.
billionaire who acquired the platform last month for $44 billionsaying those who do not sign up will be fired.
The Twitter boss sent an email to employees on Wednesday asking them to click “yes” on a form to confirm they would stay at the company under his new rules, and those who did not stay by Thursday night Will receive three months of severance pay.
The number of employees who chose to leave appeared to have taken Musk and his team by surprise.
The entrepreneur then dropped his insistence that everyone be office-based, and his initial refusal to work remotely angered many employees.
Musk’s email blitz on employees
Musk also softened his earlier tone in another email to employees, writing that “all that is needed to get approval is that your manager is responsible for making sure you make an outstanding contribution.”
He added that employees should “meet face-to-face with colleagues at a reasonable pace, ideally once a week but no less than once a month”.
Since taking over Twitter less than three weeks ago, Musk has laid off half of the company’s 7,500 full-time employees, as well as contractors who do content moderation and other critical work.
Many tweeted goodbye to colleagues, while hundreds of employees reportedly confirmed their departure in private messaging channels.
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As a result, there are concerns that the platform may struggle to stay online as a large number of people responsible for its maintenance leave the company, and that any issues that arise may take longer to resolve without key engineers on hand to deal with them.
#RIPTwitter and #GoodbyeTwitter have been trending on the platform as users also consider leaving the site, with some starting to point followers to their accounts on other platforms.
The bosses of Tesla and SpaceX continued to tweet throughout the ongoing turmoil, often mocking the concerns raised about the companies by posting memes and downplaying the situation.
“How do you make a small fortune on social media? Start with a big fortune,” he joked.
He also claimed the controversy was driving more traffic to the site, saying the company “just hit an all-time high in Twitter usage” overnight.
But industry expert Matt Navarra warns that the platform is under increasing pressure as the departure of a key engineer responsible for maintaining the site is a big deal — world cup – starting this weekend Qatar.
He said: “There are reports that teams critical to many of Twitter’s infrastructure systems are now completely empty — these teams have been completely destroyed.
“So if there were any issues or outages or sudden spikes in activity, Twitter’s ability to fix or troubleshoot was greatly reduced because the team now lacks skilled engineers.”
Many Twitter users have begun pointing their followers to their accounts on other platforms because they are unsure whether the site will remain online.
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Mr Navarra believes any imminent blackouts are unlikely.
He said: “With the code freeze in place, Twitter is currently on autopilot on its IT systems, a strategic move by Elon Musk to protect the stability of the platform as it charts its next steps.
“But with the World Cup looming, this will be the real test of Twitter’s resilience and ability to maintain the platform during busy times.
“So if one day it goes offline, I think the biggest risk at the moment will be at some key moments in the World Cup.”