Musk Complains About 'Massive Drop in Revenue'

Twitter is being sued over mass layoffs
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 4, 2022 1:06 PM CDT
Twitter Sued Over Layoffs
Elon Musk arrives at the Baron Investment Conference at the Metropolitan Opera House, Friday, Nov. 4, 2022, in New York.   (AP Photo/Yuki Iwamura)

Elon Musk is cutting a lot of jobs at Twitter—but he's creating a lot of work for lawyers. A class-action lawsuit was filed against Twitter on Thursday, the day before thousands of employees were due to get layoff notices as part of Musk's reported plan to lay off 50% of his new acquisition's workforce. The lawsuit accuses Musk of violating federal and California law with the layoffs, Bloomberg reports. Under federal law, large companies are supposed to give workers at least 60 days notice. The lawsuit, which asked the court to stop Twitter asking workers to waive their right to join the litigation, was filed by attorney Shannon Liss-Riordan. She sued Tesla in June when it laid off 10% of its workforce. Musk appears to be "repeating the same playbook," she says.

  • Employees locked out of work accounts. Gizmodo reports that employees who have joined the lawsuit include people who were "locked out of their work accounts on Thursday, presumably because they were about to be fired," as well as those who received formal notices. In an email Thursday, employees were told not to come to the office Friday. They were told they would know their employment status by 9am Friday Pacific time.
  • Authorities weren't notified. A spokesperson for California’s Employment Development Department says that as of Friday, no notice had been received of layoffs at the San Francisco-based company, the AP reports. The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification statute requires companies with more than 100 workers to publicly disclose layoffs of 500 workers or more.

  • One apparently laid-off worker is eight months pregnant. Many other employees said they had lost access to company Slack and email accounts ahead of receiving an official notice, the Wall Street Journal reports. Business Insider reports that one of them was content marketing manager Rachel Bonn, who is eight months pregnant and has a nine-month-old baby. "Just got cut off from laptop access," she tweeted Thursday night, adding the hashtag #LoveWhereYouWorked.
  • Musk is "setting investment on fire." In an opinion piece at the Washington Post, Catherine Rampell says Musk has "apparently decided to set his $44 billion investment on fire" with controversial policies likely to drive away both users and advertisers. She notes that major advertising companies like IPG and Havas Media have advised clients to pause spending at Twitter amid concerns about content moderation. Brands including General Motors, General Mills, Audi, and Pfizer have also paused Twitter advertising.

  • Musk blames "activist groups." "Twitter has had a massive drop in revenue, due to activist groups pressuring advertisers, even though nothing has changed with content moderation and we did everything we could to appease the activists," Musk tweeted Friday. "Extremely messed up! They’re trying to destroy free speech in America."
  • Amber Heard no longer in platform. Advertisers aren't the only ones heading for the exit: CNN reports that Amber Heard, Musk's ex-girlfriend, is no longer on Twitter. Musk and Heard dated after her split from Johnny Depp and they broke up in 2018. She hasn't discussed the Twitter exit on her other social media accounts.
(More Twitter stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.