The news that Twitter “does not believe in free speech” is not the big news from the latest Project Veritas exposé. Neither is Siru Murugesan’s opinion that Twitter’s employees and leadership are “commie as f***.” And really, it’s not even that this senior engineer admits that Twitter censors the Right and not the Left.
No, it’s that employees can draw salaries at Twitter even if they only work “four hours a week last quarter” and disappear for months on end to prioritize their mental health. Where do I sign up?
Well, at least until an actual capitalist shows up to run the joint, anyway?
Murugesan started working more than four hours a week because “I wanted to get promoted.” He needs more money because inflation eroded his buying power, a nod to actual economics. Inside Twitter, Murugesan explains, no one cares about “OpEx” (operating expenses), which isn’t exactly a sound structure for a company that tells shareholders that they care about profitability.
This may provide a lot more context to the conversations that Twitter founder Jack Dorsey had with Elon Musk in early April. CNBC reported it today based on a new SEC filing from Twitter, which I included in my previous post. But Murugesan’s description of the work environment and the lax expectations of the board provide a powerful argument in support of Dorsey’s alleged position that Twitter could only be fixed by jettisoning the board and going private:
On April 4, Musk reached out to Dorsey about his perspective on Twitter. Dorsey told Musk he personally believes Twitter would be better equipped to focus on execution as a private company, according to the filing. Musk asked if Dorsey would stay on the board even though he had already been set to leave, and Dorsey declined.
Soon after that conversation, the board completed Musk’s background check and his appointment to the board was set to go into effect on April 9. Leading up to that date, Musk and Agrawal continued discussing Twitter’s business and products in anticipation of his new role on the board. But before the appointment came into effect, Musk told Taylor and Agrawal he would no longer be joining the board and would instead make an offer to take Twitter private.
That makes it sound as though Dorsey lost control of his creation, and that he knew it. Simply adding Musk to the board wouldn’t change the power dynamic enough to start enforcing financial discipline and a normal work ethic. If Dorsey shared this reality with Musk on April 4th, it’s no wonder that Musk decided to either buy Twitter outright or get the hell out.
There’s lots of fun stuff about commies and partisan bias too, so don’t overlook that:
“Our jobs are at stake; he’s a capitalist and we weren’t really operating as capitalists, more like very socialist,” Murugesan says before adding, “we’re all like commie as f**k.”
Murugesan also pointed to free speech being one of the core issues employees at Twitter have with its new likely owner, Elon Musk.
When asked about the difference between Twitter’s definition of free speech and Musk’s, the Sr. Engineer left no room for interpretation. “Twitter does not believe in free speech,” said Murugesan answering the undercover journalist.
PV doesn’t quote the most on-point of Murugesan’s allegations, though. “It’s true,” Murugesan admits of Twitter censoring conservatives and right-wing populists. “There is bias.” Twitter employees see conservative speech as “bullying and harassment,” and claim that the “commies” at Twitter are sensitive to market demands from the Left to cleanse the platform of such content. As a result, Twitter applies its content standards to the Right and not to the Left, whose business Twitter wants to court more. Murugesan also admits that conservatives are more tolerant of opposing viewpoints, ironically.
Anyway, it looks like the the days of wine and commie-as-f*** roses are over if Musk takes control of Twitter. That may explain why some of the interference on conservative accounts dramatically lessened a couple of weeks ago when the board accepted Musk’s tender offer. Murugesan warns, however, that the commies won’t go down without a fight:
Murugesan also explained how Twitter employees did all they could to “revolt against” Musk’s takeover of the company. “We did all we could to like revolt against it. A lot of employees were revolting against it, but at the end of the day, the board of directors have the say.”
Musk might not be the best answer to this kind of platform manipulation. It does look, though, as though he’d be one significant answer to it.