Twitter in shambles following Elon Musk 'Twitter 2.0' ultimatum, mass employee resignations

twitter logo against a laptop screen
(Image credit: Jay Bonggolto / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Elon Musk sent an email to employees urging them to get on board with the company's new "hardcore" work ethic.
  • Employees did not take to the change and have begun leaving the company in droves.
  • Twitter is reportedly on the verge of breaking down due to a lack of engineers to keep it running effectively.

Twitter may be on the verge of a breakdown just weeks after Elon Musk took ownership of the social media platform. Following massive layoffs and internal changes, Twitter employees have apparently started leaving en masse as Musk tries (and seemingly fails) to turn the company around.

Earlier this week, Elon Musk sent an email to employees describing an "extremely hardcore" working environment involving long hours. "Only exceptional performance will constitute a passing grade," he said in the email, which was obtained by The Washington Post.

The email gave employees an ultimatum: get on board with "Twitter 2.0" or take severance and leave.

It seems Musk's scheme backfired as employees began leaving the company in droves. After the workforce was already cut in half after Elon Musk laid off thousands of staff members, employees told The Verge that the platform is at risk of breaking down as there are very few engineers left who can keep it running effectively. It's reported that as much as 75% of the remaining staff chose to resign.

As a result, Musk temporarily closed Twitter HQ, apparently over fears of employee sabotage. The office will reopen on November 21.

Following news of mass resignation, the hashtag #RIPTwitter began trending on the platform, with users fearing the end or preemptively deactivating their accounts.

Meanwhile, Musk is under scrutiny from a group of U.S. lawmakers, including Senators Richard Blumenthal and Elizabeth Warren. In a letter addressed to FTC chairwoman Lina Khan, senators point out major security risks due to Musk's changes, including the briefly launched Twitter Blue subscription that resulted in users impersonating public figures and companies. The feature was rolled back and is expected to re-launch on November 29.

"In recent weeks, Twitter's new Chief Executive Officer, Elon Musk, has taken alarming steps that have undermined the integrity and safety of the platform, and announced new features despite clear warnings those changes would be abused for fraud, scams, and dangerous impersonation," the letter reads.

"Moreover, key Twitter executives responsible for the platform's privacy, cybersecurity, and integrity resigned last week, further calling into question whether personal data is adequately protected from misuse or breach while the company explores new products and monetization strategies."

The letter urges the regulatory body to investigate the company for breach of consumer protection laws or Twitter's consent decree with the FTC.

Musk has yet to address accusations from senators and is seemingly brushing off any concerns about the company by tweeting about reinstating previously suspended accounts and posting memes, seemingly poking fun at the situation. In response to employee resignations, Musk stated that he is "not super worried" as the "best people are staying."

For more on Twitter's meltdown, check out iMore's liveblog.

Derrek Lee
Managing Editor

Derrek is the managing editor of Android Central, helping to guide the site's editorial content and direction to reach and resonate with readers, old and new, who are just as passionate about tech as we are. He's been obsessed with mobile technology since he was 12, when he discovered the Nokia N90, and his love of flip phones and new form factors continues to this day. As a fitness enthusiast, he has always been curious about the intersection of tech and fitness. When he's not working, he's probably working out.