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Elon Musk – live: Jack Dorsey apologises to staff for layoffs, ‘I realise many are angry with me’

Twitter founder Jack Dorsey broke his silence over the mass layoffs at the social media giant after Elon Musk takeover and apologised to staff for layoffs.

He wrote in a series of tweets: “Folks at Twitter past and present are strong and resilient. They will always find a way no matter how difficult the moment. I realise many are angry with me. I own the responsibility for why everyone is in this situation: I grew the company size too quickly. I apologise for that.”

Meanwhile, hours after Elon Musk decided to lay off almost 50 per cent of Twitter staff, the company’s employees were alerted on their job status by email after barring their entrances to offices and cutting off their access to internal systems overnight.

Elon Musk laid off 50 per cent of Twitter employees on Friday and defended the decision by saying that the company was losing $4m per day. All those who lost their jobs were given three months of severance pay.

Key Points

Elon Musk clamps down on parody accounts

14:30 , Adam Smith

Elon Musk is now banning anyone that is parodying him - unless they make it clear its a parody.

“Comedy is now legal on Twitter”, the billionaire said two days ago. It now seems he has changed his view.

“Going forward, any Twitter handles engaging in impersonation without clearly specifying ‘parody’ will be permanently suspended,” the multibillionaire tweeted on Monday.

The Tesla chief’s tweet comes as several users impersonated him on the microblogging platform this weekend, including actor Valerie Bertinelli who changed her profile name to “Elon Musk” shortly after the company rolled out its new controversial paid-verification system.

“The blue checkmark simply meant your identity was verified. Scammers would have a harder time impersonating you. That no longer applies. Good luck out there!” Ms Bartinelli wrote.

Twitter accounts impersonating others to be banned without warning, Elon Musk says

Twitter may have to rehire its staff

14:00 , Adam Smith

Elon Musk may have to u-turn on firing employees, Bloomberg reports.

“Some of those who are being asked to return were laid off by mistake, according to two people familiar with the moves”, the publication states, citing people familiar with the matter who requested anonymity.

“Others were let go before management realized that their work and experience may be necessary to build the new features Musk envisions, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing private information.”

Jack Dorsey apologises to staff for layoffs

Sunday 6 November 2022 06:26 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Twitter founder Jack Dorsey broke his silence over the mass layoffs at the social media giant after Elon Musk takeover and apologised to staff for layoffs.

He wrote in a series of tweets: “Folks at Twitter past and present are strong and resilient. They will always find a way no matter how difficult the moment. I realise many are angry with me. I own the responsibility for why everyone is in this situation: I grew the company size too quickly. I apologise for that.”

He added: “I am grateful for, and love, everyone who has ever worked on Twitter. I don’t expect that to be mutual in this moment...or ever…and I understand.”

UK Twitter staff given three days to choose representatives ahead of job cuts

Saturday 5 November 2022 17:30 , Thomas Kingsley

Twitter workers who face losing their jobs in the UK have been given three days to nominate a representative for a formal consultation about their employment.

The social media company began widespread staff cuts around the world on Friday, with suggestions as many as half of its more than 7,500 staff could be axed.

Workers in the UK have been told the company plans to inform and consult employee representatives ahead of potential redundancies, as required by employment law.

An email sent to staff from Twitter’s HR department on Saturday said they had until 9am on Tuesday to nominate any current employee.

Saturday 5 November 2022 16:50 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Twitter Inc has begun laying off employees under its new owner, Elon Musk. The San Francisco-based social media giant is expected to terminate up to 3,700 people - half of its workforce - on Friday, according to internal plans reviewed by Reuters this week. Twitter is already facing a proposed class action claiming the layoffs are imminent and will violate U.S. and California laws if employees are not given advance notice or severance pay.

What does US law require?

The federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act requires businesses with 100 or more employees to provide 60 days’ notice before engaging in mass layoffs. The law defines mass layoffs as those affecting at least 500 employees during a 30-day period, or at least 50 employees if layoffs impact at least one-third of a company’s workforce. Employers can provide workers with 60 days of severance pay in lieu of giving notice.

What are the penalties for violating the WARN Act?

An employer found to have violated the WARN Act can be ordered to give laid-off workers 60 days of back pay. The law also imposes penalties of $500 per violation per day. Comparable laws in California and other states impose similar penalties.

What has Twitter been accused of?

The lawsuit filed in San Francisco federal court late on Thursday claims Twitter locked employees out of their accounts on Thursday, signaling that they will soon lose their jobs. One of the five named plaintiffs, who is based in California, says he was terminated on Nov. 1 without notice or severance pay.

Twitter did not respond to a request for comment. Late on Friday, Musk tweeted that “everyone exited was offered three months of severance, which is 50% more than legally required.”

Shannon Liss-Riordan, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said on Friday that it appeared Twitter was making an effort to comply with the WARN Act by offering to pay some employees through Jan. 4. She said employees were told they would be presented with severance agreements next week requiring them to waive their ability to sue Twitter in exchange for a payout.

Liss-Riordan said she is also investigating “how Twitter chose employees for layoff and whether any discrimination or retaliation was involved.”

Elon Musk has ensured the Twitter blue check is a sign of who to avoid

Saturday 5 November 2022 16:20 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

“Apologies if you read my eulogy to Twitter last week and thought I was leaving. I only meant that the medium was dead, not that I was,” Hannah Selinger writes,

“But, in the not-quite-week since the Chief Twit has “let that sink in,” a few not-so-nice things have happened on the social platform where I am a currently a verified user. Talking about the vitriol and uptick in hate speech would take longer than this column allows — so I’m here to talk, instead, about Elon Musk’s proposed changes to the current verification policy, which has set the internet ablaze.”

Having a blue check on Twitter is now like wearing a MAGA hat — you know who to avoid

Twitter may have lost over one million accounts since Elon Musk takeover, report suggests

Saturday 5 November 2022 15:50 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Twitter may have lost more than a million accounts since Tesla chief Elon Musk closed his deal to buy the microblogging platform for $44bn and took over the company, a new analysis suggests.

Since the Tesla titan took over Twitter on 27 October, over 850,000 accounts were deactivated and nearly 500,000 likely suspended, according to Bot Sentinel, a firm that tracks inauthentic behavior on Twitter, MIT Technology Review first reported.

Vishwam Sankaran has more:

Twitter may have lost over one million accounts since Elon Musk takeover

Influencers debate leaving Twitter, but where would they go?

Saturday 5 November 2022 15:20 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Concerns over Twitter’s future are weighing on many people who have come to rely on the relatively small but mighty platform that has become a digital public square of sorts for influencers, policy makers, journalists and other thought leaders.

Read more here:

Influencers debate leaving Twitter, but where would they go?

Elon Musk’s past tweets reveal clues about Twitter’s new owner

Saturday 5 November 2022 14:49 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

He may be good with rockets and electric cars, but don’t turn to Elon Musk for public health predictions.

“Probably close to zero new cases in US too by end of April,” the world’s richest man tweeted about COVID-19 in March 2020, just as the pandemic was ramping up.

It’s one of many tweets that offer a glimpse into the mind of Twitter’s new owner and moderator in chief. Playful, aggressive and sometimes reckless, Musk’s past tweets show how he has used social media to tout his businesses, punch back at critics and burnish his brand as a brash billionaire who is unafraid to speak his mind.

Elon Musk’s past tweets reveal clues about Twitter’s new owner

Twitter sackings compared to Game of Thrones Red Wedding

Saturday 5 November 2022 13:04 , Sam Rkaina

Elon Musk’s cull of Twitter staff is being compared to one of the bleakest moments in Game of Thrones.

One Twitter user posted that the ‘Red Wedding has begun’ in reference to the infamous scene that saw - spoiler alert- several major characters killed off in one bloody swoop.

The Game of Thrones analogies are proving popular as the mass layoffs get underway, with others variously comparing Musk to the Mad King, dragons and various Targaryens.

Watch: Elon Musk defends mass layoffs, says he had ‘no choice’ but to make cuts

Saturday 5 November 2022 12:20 , Sam Rkaina

Elon Musk has defended the mass layoffs that saw half of Twitter’s almost 8,000 workers sacked, saying “unfortunately, there is no choice”.

Despite making cuts, the world’s richest man insisted that the social media platform’s commitment to moderation remained “absolutely unchanged” but blamed daily losses of $4 million for the sackings.

“Regarding Twitter’s reduction in force, unfortunately there is no choice when the company is losing over $4m (£3.5m) a day,” Mr Musk tweeted.

“Everyone exited was offered three months of severance, which is 50 per cent more than legally required.”

Click here to watch the video.

Musk says he is not doing Twitter for the money

Saturday 5 November 2022 11:15 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Elon Musk said he is not taking over Twitter for the money in an interview with the Financial Times in October.

He said: “I’m not doing Twitter for the money.

“It’s not like I’m trying to buy some yacht and I can’t afford it. I don’t own any boats.

“But I think it’s important that people have a maximally trusted and inclusive means of exchanging ideas and that it should be as trusted and transparent as possible.”

Yet within days of taking ownership of the company, he has laid off approximately 50 per cent of staff claiming that Twitter was losing $4 million per day.

Elon Musk fires Twitter’s human rights team as part of sweeping layoffs at platform

Saturday 5 November 2022 10:45 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Elon Musk fired Twitter’s entire human rights team as part of sweeping layoffs the billionaire implemented at the social media platform.

The billionaire fired employees across Twitter on Friday, a week after the world’s richest person closed his protracted $44bn deal for the San Francisco-based company.

The mass layoffs came as Mr Musk admitted that “a number of major advertisers have stopped spending on Twitter” since his takeover, with firms such as GM, Audi and General Mills pausing their advertising after the takeover.

Graeme Massie has more:

Elon Musk fires Twitter’s human rights team as part of sweeping layoffs at platform

Lawsuits begin to pile up as Twitter employees locked out of work accounts

Saturday 5 November 2022 10:15 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

A lawsuit was filed Thursday in federal court in San Francisco on behalf of one employee who was laid off and three others who were locked out of their work accounts. It alleges Twitter violated the law by not providing the required notice.

The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification statute requires employers with at least 100 workers to disclose layoffs involving 500 or more employees, regardless of whether a company is publicly traded or privately held, as Twitter is now.

Twitter filed notifications late Friday in California for its offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Jose. The layoffs affected 983 employees in the state, according to the filings. Twitter said it will continue to pay wages and benefits to the workers through Jan. 4 and employees were notified on Friday.

The layoffs affected Twitter’s offices around the world. In the United Kingdom, it would be required by law to give employees notice, said Emma Bartlett, a partner specializing in employment and partnership law at CM Murray LLP.

The speed of the layoffs could also open Musk and Twitter up to discrimination claims if it turns out, for instance, that they disproportionally affected women, people of color or older workers.

Laid off Twitter employees tweet blue heart emojis in solidarity with each other

Saturday 5 November 2022 09:45 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Twitter’s employees have been expecting layoffs since Elon Musk took the helm. He fired top executives, including CEO Parag Agrawal, and removed the company’s board of directors on his first day as owner.

As the emailed notices went out, many Twitter employees took to the platform to express support for each other — often simply tweeting blue heart emojis to signify its blue bird logo — and salute emojis in replies to each other.

A Twitter manager said many employees found out they had been laid off when they could no longer log into the company’s systems. The manager said the way the layoffs were conducted showed a “lack of care and thoughtfulness.”

The manager, who spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity out of concerns for job security, said managers were not given any notice about who would be getting laid off.

“For me as a manager, it’s been excruciating because I had to find out about what my team was going to look like through tweets and through texting and calling people,” the employee said. “That’s a really hard way to care for your people. And managers at Twitter care a lot about their people.”

‘Unfortunately, there is no choice’: Elon Musk defends axing Twitter staff

Saturday 5 November 2022 09:15 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Elon Musk has defended sacking half of Twitter’s almost 8,000 workers, saying “unfortunately, there is no choice”.

Mr Musk insisted that the platform’s commitment to moderation remained “absolutely unchanged” following reports that the company’s misinformation team was laid off.

He tweeted: “Regarding Twitter’s reduction in force, unfortunately there is no choice when the company is losing over $4m (£3.5m) a day.

“Everyone exited was offered three months of severance, which is 50 per cent more than legally required.”

‘Unfortunately, there is no choice’: Elon Musk defends axing Twitter staff

Twitter staff cuts are ‘not acceptable’, says Irish premier

Saturday 5 November 2022 08:45 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

Irish premier Micheal Martin has criticised the way in which staff were let go at Twitter, saying that it was “not acceptable” and was “fairly unprecedented”.

“We are concerned, and our concern is there for the employees of Twitter,” he told reporters in Co Tipperary.

“What I would say is no matter who you are or what sector you are in, one must always treat people with dignity and respect, and the employees at Twitter deserve to be treated with respect,” he added.

Read the full story here:

Twitter staff cuts are ‘not acceptable’, says Irish premier

Government urged to stop Twitter creating ‘digital P&O’ amid job cuts

Saturday 5 November 2022 08:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK government has been urged to intervene to stop Twitter creating a “digital P&O”, as the company carries out sweeping job cuts to save money.

The social media company began widespread staff cuts around the world on Friday, with suggestions as many as half of its more than 7,500 staff could be axed in what the company called “an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path”.

Read the full story here:

Government urged to stop Twitter creating ‘digital P&O’ amid job cuts

Twitter employees describe traumatising moments they discovered they had been fired

Saturday 5 November 2022 08:13 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Hours after Elon Musk decided to lay off almost 50 per cent of Twitter staff, the employees of the social media giant have described moments they realised their access to emails and laptops had been blocked.

The employees were sent a memo on Thursday informing them that they would receive an email in their private accounts if they had been laid off.

Chris Younie whose bio reads “Entertainment Partnerships @Twitter” wrote: “Well this isn’t looking promising. Can’t log into emails. Mac wont turn on. But so grateful this is happening at 3am. Really appreciate the thoughtfulness on the timing front guys. Meanwhile to everyone else at Twitter, you’re the best. #OneTeam.”

Another employee, Jaseem Abid wrote: “Woke up to no slack/gmail/office access and laptop remotely wiped out. Got fired without even a confirmation email while sleeping? There is always a new low.”

Biden says Twitter spews lies across the world

Saturday 5 November 2022 07:45 , Maryam Zakir-Hussain

US president Joe Biden said on Friday that Elon Musk had purchased a social media platform in Twitter that spews lies across the world.

Twitter laid off half its workforce on Friday but said cuts were smaller in the team responsible for preventing the spread of misinformation, as advertisers pulled spending amid concerns about content moderation.

Biden said at a fundraiser: “And now what are we all worried about: Elon Musk goes out and buys an outfit that sends - that spews lies all across the world... There’s no editors anymore in America. There’s no editors. How do we expect kids to be able to understand what is at stake?”

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters earlier that Biden had been clear about the need to reduce hate speech and misinformation.

“That belief extends to Twitter, it extends to Facebook and any other social media platforms where users can spread misinformation,” she said.

Musk has promised to restore free speech while preventing Twitter from descending into a “hellscape.” But major advertisers have expressed apprehension about his takeover for months.

Twitter may have lost over one million accounts since Elon Musk takeover, report suggests

Saturday 5 November 2022 07:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Twitter may have lost more than a million accounts since Tesla chief Elon Musk closed his deal to buy the microblogging platform for $44bn and took over the company, a new analysis suggests.

Since the Tesla titan took over Twitter on 27 October, over 850,000 accounts were deactivated and nearly 500,000 likely suspended, according to Bot Sentinel, a firm that tracks inauthentic behaviour on Twitter, MIT Technology Review first reported.

Read the full story here:

Twitter may have lost over one million accounts since Elon Musk takeover

Elon Musk blames activists for ‘massive drop’ in revenue as Twitter begins huge job cuts

Saturday 5 November 2022 06:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Elon Musk blamed “activist groups” for a “massive drop” in revenue at Twitter, as his company began drastic job cuts.

The billionaire began firing workers at offices around the world, raising grave concerns about the social media platform as a source of reliable information just days ahead of the US midterm elections.

The speed and size of the cuts also opened Musk and Twitter to legal action. At least one lawsuit has been filed in San Francisco alleging that the company has broken the law by not providing the required notice.

There are suggestions that as many as half of its 7,500-plus staff could be axed in what the company called “an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path”.

Read the full story here:

Musk blames ‘massive drop’ in revenue as Twitter begins huge job cuts

ICYMI: AOC accuses Elon Musk of sabotaging her Twitter account: ‘Doesn’t seem very free speechy to me’

Saturday 5 November 2022 06:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has accused Elon Musk of sabotaging her Twitter account after the two engaged in an online spat on the social media platform.

The congresswoman from New York and the new owner of the $44bn company went back on forth over Mr Musk’s plan to charge users $8 for a blue tick, as well as the price of merchandise sold by the politician’s office.

And Ms Ocasio-Cortez was left to complain that following the public argument her Twitter account had seemingly stopped working properly.

Read the full story here:

AOC accuses Elon Musk of sabotaging her Twitter account

ICYMI: Amber Heard’s Twitter account vanishes days after takeover by her ex Elon Musk

Saturday 5 November 2022 05:50 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Amber Heard’s Twitter account appears to have been removed just days after her ex-boyfriend, Elon Musk, took ownership of the social media platform.

The American actor’s handle, @realAmberHeard, was no longer an active account on the social media platform as of Thursday, Insider reported, but it was unclear when it had been deactivated, nor were there any public statements from the Hollywood star providing an explanation for its absence.

Read the full story here:

Amber Heard’s Twitter account vanishes days after takeover by her ex Elon Musk

Eric Idle slams Elon Musk’s Twitter verification plans which he says he stole from Monty Python

Saturday 5 November 2022 05:30 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Elon Musk’s plans to charge $8 for verification have been slammed by Eric Idle after the Tesla billionaire claimed he got the idea from the Monty Python comedy group.

Twitter’s new owner has come under fire for his plans to charge for a blue tick on the social media platform after completing his $44bn takeover.

Read the full story here:

Eric Idle slams Twitter verification plans Elon Musk said he stole from Monty Python

‘Unfortunately, there is no choice’: Elon Musk defends axing Twitter staff

Saturday 5 November 2022 05:00 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Elon Musk has defended sacking half of Twitter’s almost 8,000 workers, saying “unfortunately, there is no choice”.

Mr Musk insisted that the platform’s commitment to moderation remained “absolutely unchanged” following reports that the company’s misinformation team was laid off.

Read the full story here:

‘Unfortunately, there is no choice’: Elon Musk defends axing Twitter staff

Elon Musk says ‘power to the people' after firing 50 per cent of Twitter employees

Saturday 5 November 2022 04:38 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Hours after firing 50 per cent of the staff at Twitter, Elon Musk tweeted “power to the people”, as a grim situation unfolded at the social media platform after his takeover.

He defended his decision to sack Twitter staff by claiming that the company was losing $4m per day. He added that all those who lost their jobs were given three months of severance pay, which he claimed was “50 per cent more than legally required”.

“Regarding Twitter’s reduction in force, unfortunately there is no choice when the company is losing over $4M/day. Everyone exited was offered 3 months of severance, which is 50% more than legally required,” he tweeted.