By Tyler Lyn Sorrow
So far this Fall has been one hell of a ride. Over the last month we’ve watched riveted and in horror as new “Chief Twit” Elon Musk, 5, decimates a company and in the process thousands of lives.
Unfortunately for all of us, including Musk, his mouth wrote a check that very much did get cashed last April. In a bizarrely atypical version of “will they, won’t they,” Musk conceded to pay up after realizing going to trial would be worse than just buying the company.
Time magazine reported Musk was personally responsible for $25 billion of that $44 billion deal. Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz and other investors picked up the rest. Twitter’s net worth in August was about $13.3 billion, and the company hadn’t returned a profit in half a decade. Let that sink in.
He liquidated $15 billion of his personal Tesla stock to fund this escapade in a move that had investors side-eyeing each other nervously.
So what does an insecure billionaire do when he’s just massively overpaid for a company that had its last profitable year in 2017?
A.) Carry a literal sink over the Twitter HQ threshold on your first day. You’ll make a “joke” that won’t land but that sink may become emblematic of things to come.
Sink image added to the folder but editorial can decide if it’s used or not.
B.) Lay-off over half of the employees, many of which occupy positions that keep the platform running smoothly. Eve
C.) Permanently ban users who impersonate you and/or hurt your feelings. You may even decide to throw out your new rule and hire at-least one engineer that tricked news outlets into believing you laid them off.
D.) Demand that every employee that wants to be a part of Twitter 2.0 send an email by deadline or be fired with severance. Employees that were “fired” will still have access to their company computer past the deadline. You don’t actually know who didn’t respond, and there are still thousands of employees left.
E.) All of the above, plus invite disgraced former president Donald Trump back to the platform in a tweet that could be viewed as sexual harassment in some lights. The Donald will not be impressed. Also,Trump has his own platform TRUTH Social.
I spoke with one Twitter employee that requested anonymity out of fear of retribution. They said, “morale is extremely low… the only communication we received told us to go to the office now.” Employees that didn’t get the “Musk Mail” usually get sent a screenshot by one that did.
During the first round of layoffs, the employee’s direct supervisor advised them to start working on a new resume and they would as well. My source was afraid to say more but did mention they were concerned their work computer was being monitored. Whether that employee’s computer was being monitored or not can’t be determined by me, but it’s hard to deny that this alone would fit the description of a hostile work environment.
Meanwhile, over in the Teslaverse we’ve been discovering just how dangerous his self-driving cars are, prompting the question, “Exactly how far is Musk allowed to go when his choices endanger so many?”
Musk wants so badly to be Bruce Wayne rolled up with Buzz Aldrin, but he’s actually an adult Richie Rich without the character arc.
He said he wouldn’t let Alex Jones back onto Twitter because he’d never have mercy for someone that hurts or profits off children, but his self-driving cars have proven a significant risk to children’s lives.
Even now Musk confirmed that Apple is threatening Twitter’s presence in the App Store. Because of this he’s been releasing tweets targeted at Apple Store censorship. It’s one of the newest developments in what has felt like a never ending stream over the last month.
All of this leads back to a fundamental trait that has been exhibited time and time again: his insecurity and need to be a Savior creates an undertow that sucks the lives of others under.
When you consider the thousands of people and their lives that went into building Twitter, and what they created together, it’s especially galling to hear things like “Billionaires are job creators!” when one man can completely upend a 16 year tech legacy.
Twitter is a legacy. Full stop. Iconic moments were immortalized on Twitter and we learned from them. We grew, we adapted and we were, most of all, better informed. During the Arab Spring we were able to follow along even in media blackouts. Twitter was fundamental in spreading ideas during Occupy, and it helped camps all over the states connect to each other. These moments were immortalized on Twitter and we learned from them.
In Cannon Ball, North Dakota, on that cold November night when Water Protectors were “kettled” on the bridge, some media sources said protestors set fire to the dry grass. In reality, sparks from the LRADs fired on protestors set the flames. One woman nearly had her arm blown off and it was documented on Twitter.
Twitter was there during a BLM protest when one photojournalist, despite being identifiable as press, had an eye shot out with a rubber bullet by an officer in Minneapolis. She tweeted about her experiences.
Each of these examples, in their own right, are iconic moments of the last decade, and they were covered on Twitter. With that in mind, and the amount of wreckage he has accumulated, what is the true number of casualties associated with this man?