Elon Musk’s photo is seen through a Twitter logo in this illustration taken October 28, 2022.
Dado Ruvic | Reuters
On Friday, Twitter‘s new owner Elon Musk sent a companywide email to employees of the social media giant thanking them for working long hours since he took over on Oct. 28.
Musk said he had personally stayed at Twitter’s headquarters office in San Francisco late on Thursday night as well. He then invited employees who have returned to the San Francisco office, and who survived last week’s 50% reduction in workforce, to come visit with him.
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Overnight, Twitter appeared to pause its $7.99/month Twitter Blue subscription service, which allowed users of the social network to pay to attain a blue verified-subscriber check mark. Many users abused the new subscriber badge to impersonate brands and famous people who acquired a blue check mark via the company’s original verification system.
Among the brands that were impersonated were Eli Lilly, the pharmaceutical giant, video game multinational Nintendo, and Elon Musk’s electric vehicle company, Tesla.
Two current Twitter employees told CNBC that they were fielding calls from colleagues and clients about all the changes to the platform.
One said Twitter used to make product changes more slowly and carefully and that was because they had to balance user behavior, safety and revenue impact. The new more experimental approach that Musk is taking has troubled many including advertisers, and even the FTC.
Employees also said they wanted more clarity about the company’s new time off and return to office policies and that Elon Musk’s e-mail left them with questions. Friday is a national holiday in the U.S., Veterans Day, and some workers did not expect they would have to come in, while others are wondering if they still have approved exceptions that will allow them to continue to work from home. Two employees told CNBC that they have not gotten formal guidance from the company’s human resources department on remote work.
This week, Musk told Twitter employees that he was reversing the company’s previous “work from home forever” policy which had been enacted by his personal friend and collaborator, former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
Here’s the e-mail from Elon Musk to Twitter employees on Friday, transcribed by CNBC:
From: Elon Musk
Date: Nov. 11, 2022 [time stamp removed]
To: Team at Twitter
Subj. Being There (great movie)
I was at Twitter HQ again until late into the night yesterday and would like to extend a note of appreciation to those who were there with me, as well as those working remotely, some of whom had been up even longer.
To reaffirm, working remotely is fine if you cannot reasonably make it to the office and you are performing at an exceptional level. That said, I am a big believer in the esprit de corps and effectiveness of being physically in the same location.
I will be in the office again today. Stop by the 10th floor if you’d like to talk about taking Twitter to the next level. The priority is near-term actions.