What you need to know
Twitter has begun laying off a large portion of its staff following its recent change in ownership.A letter to employees indicated that the move was to “place Twitter on a healthy path.”Former employees have filed a lawsuit against the company for violating California’s WARN Act.
Elon Musk’s firing spree is not done as the new owner and CEO of Twitter begins laying off a large portion of the company’s employees.
A notice, obtained by The Washington Post, was emailed to employees on Thursday evening, warning employees that some would soon be notified of the status of their roles at the company. The email was slated to arrive in employee inboxes from 9 am PT on Friday, November 4.
“In an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path, we will go through the difficult process of reducing our global workforce on Friday,” the email starts. “We recognize that this will impact a number of individuals who have made valuable contributions to Twitter, but this action is unfortunately necessary to ensure the company’s success moving forward.”
It was previously reported that Elon Musk planned to lay off anywhere between 25% and 50% of Twitter’s 7,500 employees. Elon denied earlier claims that he planned to let go of employees before they could receive their year-end compensation, such as stock grants. At the moment, it remains unclear at the moment just how many staff members were let go, but there’s no shortage of posts on Twitter from employees that were laid off or who lost large portions of their teams. The hashtag #TwitterLayoffs is currently trending.
Meanwhile, some are already taking legal action. A lawsuit has been filed against the company, alleging that it did not give employees enough notice. The lawsuit was filed by several staff members, three of whom were locked out of their accounts and presumably let go from their positions. It claims that Twitter violated California law by not giving employees enough notice.
“Twitter began the layoffs with a few employees. For example, on November 1, 2022, Twitter terminated Plaintiff Emmanuel Cornet without providing advanced written warning, as required by the federal WARN Act and California WARN Act, which require sixty (60) days advance written notice of a mass layoff.”
The lawsuit seeks to force Twitter to comply with the WARN act and prevent the company from “soliciting releases from employees who are being laid off.”
Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Meanwhile, Elon Musk has seemingly not addressed the layoffs, instead complaining on Twitter that the company’s revenue has dropped as a result of advertisers pulling out:
Twitter has had a massive drop in revenue, due to activist groups pressuring advertisers, even though nothing has changed with content moderation and we did everything we could to appease the activists.Extremely messed up! They’re trying to destroy free speech in America.November 4, 2022
Musk has been very outspoken about his stance on free speech, which he has stated was a big reason why he sought to purchase Twitter. While he says nothing has changed regarding the company’s content moderation, he previously stated that he plans to create a “content moderation council” that will be responsible for deciding what content to moderate and what banned or suspended accounts to reinstate.
More recently, Musk announced changes to Twitter Blue that would result in a price increase while tying verification to the service. He argues that the change would provide Twitter with additional revenue as the company could not rely as much on advertisers.