Elon Musk began laying off Twitter employees, days after its $44 billion takeover

Twitter has begun laying off major parts of the company, Elon Musk’s first major move since his acquisition of the company was completed last week.

Twitter told employees in an email sent Thursday evening and seen by NBC News that the company would notify employees via email of their employment.

“We recognize that this will impact a number of people who have made valuable contributions to Twitter, but this action is unfortunately necessary to ensure the company’s success in the future,” the email reads.

The shots immediately launched a class action lawsuit against Twitter for allegedly failing to give a 60-day warning of mass layoffs.

It had been widely reported that Musk planned to cut the company’s payroll for 7,500 people after completing its $44 billion acquisition late last week. He immediately fired CEO Parag Agrawal, as well as Twitter’s chief financial officer and its head of legal, public policy, trust and safety during the company’s takeover.

A Twitter employee said Thursday’s email was the first communication staffers had received from Twitter since the Oct. 27 acquisition.

Elon Musk at SpaceX’s Starbase facility near Boca Chica Village, Texas on February 10, 2022.Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images File

“It’s total chaos, the house is collapsing, everyone is looking at this email,” the employee said.

According to the email from Twitter, staff members will receive notices either through their company email accounts – if they still have a job – or through their personal email accounts if their “job is affected”.

Here’s the latest on Twitter since Musk’s takeover

The company said headcount was being reduced in “an effort to put Twitter on a healthy path.”

Concerns about the layoffs began to emerge before the takeover deal was completed, but Twitter’s general counsel urged employees not to dwell on rumors before Musk became the owner.

Some Twitter employees have expressed a desire to be fired and get severance pay, and some worry that disagreeing with Musk could mean losing both their jobs and the exit package.

“At the end of this nightmare, I better get a cash prize,” said a Twitter employee.

Meanwhile, Musk sought to reassure advertisers, saying in a Twitter post that the platform would not become a “free-for-all hellscape”. He also told the European Union that he plans to comply with its Digital Services Act, which penalizes companies if they fail to control illegal content, Reuters reported on Monday.

Musk also promised to relax the rules on the type of speech allowed, causing concern that the changes could scare away users and advertisers. General Motors has announced that it will suspend its advertising on the platform.

He also said he plans to form a content moderation board that would include “very diverse viewpoints”; no changes have been made so far.

Reports suggested that hate speech increased in the early days of Musk’s ownership of the site. musk itself posted a link to a baseless anti-LGBTQ conspiracy theory Sunday about the attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. Musk deleted the tweet.

It was among nearly two dozen tweets that Musk posted over the past weekend, few of which offered further clarification on what the site will look like under his stewardship.

Jason Abbruzzese and Phil Health contributed.

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