Twitter is said to be losing more employees a day after CEO Elon Musk gave them a deadline to choose to work “hardcore” or quit with severance pay.
In a company-wide email sent Wednesday, Musk told employees the selection must be made by 5 p.m. EST Thursday. After the deadline, some employees took to the social media platform to announce that they were “signing,” according to the Associated Press.
More employees have reportedly gone to a private forum outside the company’s message board to discuss their planned departures.
An employee fired earlier in the week, who spoke to the AP anonymously out of fear of reprisal, said people were wondering if the resignation would affect their US visas and whether they would actually get the promised severance pay.
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It’s not clear how many employees decided to leave after Wednesday’s email, but Musk recently hired half of the company’s 7,500 full-time workforce and an undisclosed number of contractors.
Fortune Magazine’s technology reporter Kylie Robson tweeted Thursday night that she heard unconfirmed reports that nearly 75% of Twitter’s 3,700 remaining employees had quit by the deadline.
In a thread, Robson said that if the reports were correct, the company would have shrunk by a “massive” 88% in just one month.
Some of Twitter’s remaining employees have taken to the platform to extend well-wishes to co-workers who have decided to leave the company.
“To all the Maghrebians who have decided to make today your last day: Thank you for being such incredible colleagues through the ups and downs. Can’t wait to see what you do next,” Esther Crawford tweeted on Thursday.
Crawford remains with the company and is working on overhauling the platform’s verification system.
The latest round of departures puts the platform in a difficult position as it prepares for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, which is said to be one of the busiest events on Twitter.
In addition to the mass layoffs and Thursday’s deadline, Musk fired a small group of engineers earlier in the week who had spoken out against him both publicly and in the company’s internal messaging system Slack.
He also made waves in his first day at the helm of Twitter by firing several senior executives while others left voluntarily in the aftermath.
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On Thursday, Musk sent a softer email retracting his initial decision to ban telecommuting and have every employee work in an office. Employees are now allowed to work remotely as long as their manager agrees and takes responsibility to ensure all employees make “excellent contributions”.
The AP reports that remote workers are also expected to attend “in-person meetings with your colleagues at a reasonable pace, ideally weekly, but no less than once a month.”
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In the early morning hours on Friday, #RIPTwitter was the top trending topic on Twitter followed by Elon. Other popular topics are Twitter Off, Twitter, Before Twitter, and #TwitterIsOverParty.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.