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November 21, 2022

Elon Musk FIRED All The Women At Twitter & It Instantly Got Better

TheQuartering [11/21/2022]

According to NPR:

Eric Frohnhoefer thought his tweets to Twitter CEO (and his newboss) Elon Musk explaining why there was a problem with the platform’s speed was innocuous enough.

Musk had tweeted, “I’d like to apologize for Twitter being super slow in many countries,” blaming it on “poorly batched RPCs” (remote process calls).

Frohnhoefer responded to the post and said the billionaire was mistaken on the cause of the app’s slow speed. He also suggested potential solutions.

Frohnhoefer had been astaff software engineer at the company for eight years, with an expertise on Android systems. In other words, he knew a thing or two about how the site worked.

“I feel like I didn’t cross the line. I feel like I answered it appropriately. And yeah, obviously they saw it differently,” Frohnhoefer told NPR.

There were some on social media that watched Frohnhoefer’s exchange with his boss and saw it as problematic, and a potential fireable offense. But Frohnhoefer noted part of Twitter’s culture, at least prior to Musk, was about being able to flag problems and to disagree when the company’s product was at issue.

Musk apparently viewed it poorly. On Monday, Musk tweeted thatFrohnhoefer was fired. Musk later deleted the tweet.

“So that’s how I found out. From that tweet,” he said.

Frohnhoefer learned about his firing by another coworker who saw Musk’s tweet. He verified with the company he was let go from Twitter and that was that.

A spokesperson for Twitter could not be reached.

Butreports from Platformer, which first spoke to Frohnhoefer, indicate he wasn’t the only one fired along these lines. The outlet said others were reportedly terminated for “their behavior.”

In addition to the public firing of Frohnhoefer this week, Musk also gave employees an ultimatum: They must commit to long, intense hours in an “extremely hardcore” company by Thursday afternoon or leave, with three month’s severance.

These latest, very public antics by Musk not only hurts his employees, but also the platform’s ability to operate seamlessly and to earn a profit, a labor lawyer and tech PR specialist told NPR. Musk’s actions are also likely costing the company qualified talent and more money in the long run.

“Creating an environment where workers are afraid to flag problems with the product for fear that they’ll be fired by tweet in the middle of night is not going to encourage people to want to work there,” Catherine Fisk, a law professor at the U.C. Berkeley School of Law, said. “It’s not going to encourage those who are there to want to give their all to the job or to raise questions about whether there’s a better way that something could be done.”

Musk is already under fire for laying off a huge chunk of the workforce just a week after his takeover. Twitter was sued the day before the layoffs by workers fearful that they would not receive the legally required 60 days’ notice for layoffs. (Twitter did, in fact, offer three months’ severance.)

“He keeps acting with this flagrant disregard for the engineers at Twitter,” said Ed Zitron, who runs a media consulting business for tech startups. “It is a remarkable thing that Twitter has remained up in the last few weeks, considering the complete mania that Musk has been operating with.”

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