Twitter has been forced to close all of its office buildings and suspend badge access after hundreds of employees rejected an ultimatum put to them by new owner Elon Musk.
Employees working for the social media platform had until 2pm Pacific Time on Thursday to select “yes” on a Google Form to the question of whether they wanted to stay at a new “hardcore” Twitter, according to reports by The Verge and New York Times.
Musk had hoped staff would sign up to his “exciting journey”. Instead, employees began posting farewell messages to what has been described as an avalanche of salute emojis.
Outside the company’s headquarters in San Fransisco, messages were being projected onto the building, many of which pertained to the company’s new billionaire boss.
Elsewhere, on a neighbouring building, similar messages appeared calling Twitter “Musk’s hellscape” and saying the SpaceX man is launching the company to bankruptcy.
Since taking over Twitter less than three weeks ago, Musk has booted half of the company’s full-time staff of 7,500 and an untold number of contractors responsible for content moderation and other crucial efforts.
He fired top executives on his first day as Twitter’s owner, while others left voluntarily in the ensuing days. Earlier this week, he began firing a small group of engineers who took issue with him publicly or in the company’s internal Slack messaging system.
Then overnight on Wednesday, Musk sent an email to the remaining staff at Twitter, saying that it is a software and servers company at its heart and he asked employees to decide by Thursday evening if they want to remain a part of the business.
Musk wrote that employees “will need to be extremely hardcore” to build “a breakthrough Twitter 2.0” and that long hours at high intensity will be needed for success.
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