It has been in the world news agendas all week that Musk has purchased Twitter for a ridiculously high amount of money. I have a few things to say on the topic, which I have been doing on Twitter, but it’s time for a post about it.
Let me just say it first: It’s his money and clearly, Twitter liked the deal. They are grown-ups with money, and it’s their business. But that doesn’t mean I have to like the changes happening on the last social media account that I have left.
I never liked Elon Musk. Although I respect his successful enterprises, I don’t like his operating model. There have been quite a few tweets he has sent to put a lot of Twitter employees under pressure and anxiety. Who brings a literal sink to the company he’s purchasing to make a point? Or as a joke? Yes, it’s funny if you think about it hard enough, but thousands are working in that company, already anxious about losing their jobs or working in a toxic environment. How healthy is this? How humane is this?
Furthermore, he sent many tweets (before even the deal went through) that meant he thinks the Twitter team is incompetent. Maybe not with these exact words but written clearly enough so it wouldn’t be mistaken. Without due diligence, without knowing explicitly what is wrong in that company, how can someone make a statement like that? How would it make those employees feel?
And lastly, many people reported that they were asked to print out their last 60 days of code and bring them to their meeting with Tesla engineers. They were told the shred them afterwards but looks like they clearly carried on with the metric.
Apples and Oranges
Tesla might be a great company, but it has different sets of skills among its engineers. True, they have a website, but the type of work that Twitter does is different. They are in no place to judge employee performance, especially since they weren't part of the company. They don’t know how Twitter operates, and they don’t have insider knowledge to figure out the root causes of performance issues. This is ridiculous.
Also, who would set up a performance metric like that? Who would fire people for a performance metric that didn’t exist a day ago? How can you make insightful decisions on who to fire based on the number of lines they’ve written?
These guys have been fired with just a week’s worth of salary as severance. Many of those deserved more. This whole deal has been on the terms of being inhumane and brutal from day one. This sets terrible precedence for the remaining employees and works as a hanging guillotine to keep them in line. How awful.
Why do I care?
What is it to me, you may ask? Why do I care? I don’t like to see how Musk behaves as the money gives him every right to fire people at will. To piss on the legacy of those people as freely as he does. I don’t like to be a part of a system that promotes this type of behaviour. I’ve deleted my Facebook account because of this reason. I stopped uploading to my Instagram because of this reason (I'll delete it as soon as I figure out how to stay connected to that many people).
I’m contemplating on exiting Twitter as well, but I have to keep my account alive to keep tabs on the Long-COVID community and potential treatment options. I need visibility of it.
I don’t want to be a part of this type of social media. Greedy, shameless, unempathetic, and brutal behaviour is not going to fly with me.