Twitter employees are reacting to Musk's takeover of the company (Update)

(AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter is now a done deal and as you might imagine not everyone is happy about it. You may have seen some of the tweets from people threatening to leave the site now that Musk owns it. Someone created this mocking meme aimed at those folks.


The NY Times published a story this afternoon about how employees of the company are reacting. Somewhat surprisingly, not everyone who works there is unhappy about the change.

In January 2020, thousands of Twitter employees gathered in Houston for a corporate summit called #OneTeam. During the event, Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s chief executive at the time, revealed he had invited a surprise guest. Then, with a wave and a smile, Elon Musk appeared on giant screens above the stage. The crowd cheered, clapped and pumped fists. “We love you,” one employee shouted.

Inside Twitter today, surprise announcements about Mr. Musk land differently. Employees said they had largely stopped celebrating the richest man in the world since he declared his intent this month to buy Twitter, scrap its content moderation policies and transform the publicly traded company into a private one…

Employees said they worried that Mr. Musk would undo the years of work they had put into cleaning up the toxic corners of the platform, upend their stock compensation in the process of taking the company private and disrupt Twitter’s culture with his unpredictable management style and abrupt proclamations.

But Mr. Musk also has fans among Twitter’s rank-and-file, and some employees have welcomed his bid. In an internal Slack message seen by The New York Times that asked if employees were excited about Mr. Musk, about 10 people responded with a “Yes” emoji. A Twitter spokesman declined to comment.


So that NY Times report is fairly measured but another Times reporter suggested on Twitter that people at the company were freaking out.

There was a 4th tweet in that thread in which an employee described themselves as “pretty broken” by the news but for some reason Smith deleted it. Yashar Ali reports that the top question coming from the staff right now isn’t about the product it’s about whether employees will still be able to work from home.


So there may be some level of freakout happening but not all of it is of the anti-Musk, anti-free-speech variety. Still, it’s fun to imagine.

Update: And Twitter has locked its code to prevent employees from making unauthorized changes.

Twitter Inc. locked down changes to its social networking platform through Friday after accepting a $44 billion bid from billionaire Elon Musk, making it harder for employees to make unauthorized changes, according to people familiar with the matter.

For now, Twitter won’t allow product updates unless they’re business-critical, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the situation is private.

Does this mean they were worried about unhinged employees making some kind of protest via the code? Or maybe Musk wants to make sure it’s preserved as is so he can make the status quo public.

Update: It seems some employees are trying to make a statement.


Update: Looking at this chart, there are certainly a lot of unhappy people at Twitter right now, people for whom Musk is just not progressive enough.

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