Twitter has abruptly made another round of layoffs, with Elon Musk forcing around 200 employees out of the company over the weekend.
The social media platform, which was acquired by the South African billionaire back in late October of 2022, has already seen its payroll shrink dramatically during his tenure in charge.
Interestingly, Musk now seems to be getting rid of people who were more than happy to work the “hardcore” hours he demands, while other reports have noted that key engineers who keep the site ticking along have also been cast aside.
Musk Lays off 10% of Twitter Workforce
This weekend, Elon Musk laid off “at least 50” employees, The Information reports. However, the figure now emerging seems to be closer to 200, which amounts to around one-tenth of Twitter’s remaining, 2000-person workforce.
Rather than receiving an official letter, many of the now-former employees found out that they were about to lose their jobs after attempting to log into their workplace accounts, only to find out that their access was blocked.
For instance, Martin De Kuijper, founder of Twitter-owned newsletter service Revue, only discovered he was among the unlucky few after finding it impossible to access his Twitter email address.
Shifting to “Hardcore Mode” Is Clearly Not Enough
Zoe Schiffer, managing editor of tech publication Platformer, remarked on Twitter that the cohort deemed surplus to requirements includes a “ton of surprises”.
In another Tweet, Schiffer noted that Esther Crawford, chief of Twitter Payments, has been told she's no longer required at the company. Crawford is perhaps best known for overseeing the company’s Twitter Blue subscription service.
Crawford attracted media attention shortly after Musk's takeover of the platform and subsequent introduction of “hardcore mode” for those wanting to stay, quote tweeting an image of herself asleep on the floor of Twitter’s offices accompanied by the hashtag #SleepWhereYouWork.
She added in a thread that “doing hard things requires sacrifice (time, energy, etc). I have teammates around the world who are putting in the effort to bring something new to life so it's important to me to show up for them & keep the team unblocked.”
Musk’s Twitter: What’s Next?
It was pretty clear that when Musk took over Twitter, significant layoffs would take place. Few, however, thought he’d axe almost three-quarters of the social media platforms’ staff in his first six months at the helm of the social media network.
This latest batch of layoffs is much smaller than the thousands of Twitter staff that were given their marching orders at once towards the tail-end of last year, but is arguably more significant. In addition, Musk's demands on his staff have seen perks such as free lunches and remote working scrapped (a move that the likes of Disney and Amazon have since adopted), with those that refuse to fall in line cut from the company.
Now, even surviving employees with high degrees of loyalty to Musk must now be wondering precisely how secure their own positions are. With a CEO as volatile and enigmatic as the one in post, however, it's literally anyone's guess.