Twitter is at risk of going down after masses of staff reject Elon Musk's ultimatum and leave

Jess Hardiman

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Twitter is at risk of going down after masses of staff reject Elon Musk's ultimatum and leave

Featured Image Credit: Apex MediaWire/Filip Radwanski/Alamy Stock Photo

Twitter is at risk of going down after mass walkouts from staff, including engineers responsible for preventing outages.

Elon Musk has made no secret of the huge shakeups at Twitter since he took control, having issued staff an ultimatum earlier this week – telling them to either agree to conform to his six rules of 'insane productivity' or get out.

Employees were told to respond 'yes' on a Google form to stay on for what the new company head dubbed 'Twitter 2.0'.

If they did not agree, staff were told they would be sacked when the clock struck 5pm, and would receive three months’ worth of severance pay.

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“Going forward, to build a breakthrough Twitter 2.0 and succeed in an increasingly competitive world, we will need to be extremely hardcore,” Musk told his workforce in an email.

In the wake of the divisive demand, many Twitter workers simply accepted that it was their time to go, with farewell messages beginning to flood the company’s internal Slack boards, while others took to social media to announce their decision.

However, as Reuters reports, many of these departures include engineers who had worked on ‘fixing bugs and preventing service outages’, which means there are now questions about the ‘stability of the platform'.

Elon Musk. Credit: Apex MediaWire/Alamy Stock Photo
Elon Musk. Credit: Apex MediaWire/Alamy Stock Photo

One source told the news agency that on Thursday (17 November), the version of the Twitter app used by employees began slowing down.

The source, who declined to be named for fear of retribution, also estimated that the public version of Twitter was at risk of breaking overnight.

"If it does break, there is no one left to fix things in many areas," they said.

Reuters adds that reports of Twitter outages rose sharply from less than 50 to about 350 reports on Thursday evening, citing data from website DownDetector, which charts website and app issues.

The source explained how, in a private chat on Signal with about 50 Twitter staff members, nearly 40 admitted they had decided to leave the company.

In another private Slack group for current and former employees, about 360 people joined a new 'voluntary layoff' channel, another source with knowledge of the group said.

Remaining and departing employees also told The Verge that they expected the platform to start breaking soon, given the scale of the resignations.

Former staffers fear mass walkouts could result in outages. Credit: GK Images/Alamy Stock Photo
Former staffers fear mass walkouts could result in outages. Credit: GK Images/Alamy Stock Photo

Saying they had watched 'legendary engineers' and others they look up to leave, one Twitter staffer said: “It feels like all the people who made this place incredible are leaving.

“It will be extremely hard for Twitter to recover from here, no matter how hardcore the people who remain try to be.”

After a number of members of Twitter's 'Command Center' team - who are on call 24/7 - tweeted about their resignations, another unnamed person said: “If they go down, there is no one to call when s**t breaks."

UNILAD has reached out to Twitter for comment.

Topics: News, Twitter, Elon Musk, Technology

Jess Hardiman
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