A week after he completed his purchase of social media platform Twitter, Elon Musk is now coming to realize that he may have made an enormous financial mistake that could cost the lion’s share of his wealth.
Already hemorrhaging billions of dollars in profit, Musk announced Friday that he would be slashing the Twitter workforce, laying off thousands of employees, according to The Washington Post.
An email went out to the company’s employees late Thursday notifying employees of plans to cut jobs, informing them that by 9 a.m. Pacific time Friday, workers would receive an email with the subject line: “Your Role at Twitter.”
Those keeping their jobs would be notified on their company email. Those losing them would be told via their personal email.
“Team, In an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path, we will go through the difficult process of reducing our global workforce on Friday,” according to multiple versions of the email obtained by The Washington Post. “We recognize that this will impact a number of individuals who have made valuable contributions to Twitter, but this action is unfortunately necessary to ensure the company’s success moving forward.”
And yet, according to Musk, the blame for Twitter’s financial problems lies with “activist groups” who are hellbent on destroying him and his experiment in “free speech.”
What Musk neglected to mention is that he could also be responsible for the drop in ad revenue. After all, he’s the one who raised eyebrows and drew the ire of millions by sharing a bogus conspiracy theory about the attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Mediaite rightly points out:
Days after the purchase went through, Musk raised many eyebrows by tweeting a baseless conspiracy theory about Paul Pelosi’s attacker that suggested it was a gay lovers’ tryst gone bad, amplifying a report from the not-at-all-reputable Santa Monica Observed, which he later deleted.
It was a clear signal that Musk seemed more committed to an irresponsible sharing of conspiracy theories than overseeing a platform dedicated to some semblance of fairness, which appears to have freaked out a skittish set of advertisers, as the Wall Street Journal reported last week.
What really has Musk worried is that his own hubris appears to be what could lead to his downfall:
A source familiar with Musk’s purchase of Twitter tells Mediaite that since he had to borrow $13B to close the purchase, “the interest on that loan left very little, very little, room as it basically matched Twitters profit. So now as the advertisers leave, he’s kind of fucked.”
Kind of fucked. That could be the title of Musk’s autobiography if he ever takes the time to sit down and write it instead of tweeting out weepy kvetching.