Elon Musk is downsizing Twitter. The new owner of the social network laid off at least 1,000 workers this Friday, according to Business Insider. It is estimated that up to 3,700 employees will be laid off from the company. Some Twitter and Tesla executives prepared the lists of workers to be laid off.
Musk sent out an email informing staff which employees were being laid off. Those who will continue to work at the company also received an email on their work account explaining that they must return to the office and can no longer work from home.
Well, it was nice to work on twitter. Now to fly to new nest #OneTeam Open for business and freelance. Let's do this
- Geraldine (@Geraljaja) November 4, 2022
After acquiring Twitter, Elon Musk has already fired several executives such as CEO Parag Agrawal, CFO Ned Segal and senior legal officers such as Vijaya Gadde, who was responsible for suspending Donald Trump's account among others. Over the past weekend, some of the company's management positions have already been eliminated.
Main changes on Twitter
Apart from downsizing and making executive changes, Elon Musk announced in May the main changes he wants to implement. Musk will focus on Twitter's design, security and technology:
If Twitter acquisition completes, company will be super focused on hardcore software engineering, design, infosec & server hardware https://t.co/m2HseK0TXl
- Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 6, 2022
One of the important changes implemented is user verification. In order for an account to have the famous blue check, the user will have to pay $8 dollars each month when, up until now, it was free. This plan sparked criticism from those who already have a verified account. Identity theft or loss of influence are some of the top concerns.
Another new feature will be the "Edit Tweet" button. With this feature, users will be able to correct spelling mistakes and avoid misinformation. Musk is also reportedly considering bringing back Vine, a popular short-form video app that Twitter acquired in 2012.
Freedom of expression
The measure that Elon Musk stresses most is respecting freedom of expression. According to a poll Musk himself released a few days ago, nearly 80% of voters indicated that free speech should be respected over "political correctness."
Advertisers should support:
- Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 2, 2022
Twitter has become one of the main forums for opinion and discussion in the world and, therefore, Musk wants to fulfill this principle on his social network without vetoes or censorship:
By "free speech", I simply mean that which matches the law.
I am against censorship that goes far beyond the law.
If people want less free speech, they will ask government to pass laws to that effect.
Therefore, going beyond the law is contrary to the will of the people.
- Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 26, 2022
On another occasion, Musk said that "Free speech is essential to a functioning democracy" and questioned whether the previous executive respected it.