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To say that the past few hours have been crazy in Twitter-land would be a euphemism of the highest order. After all, as Elon Musk's arbitrary deadline approached for employees to either adopt the new vision or fall by the wayside, the platform's employees rose up en masse, including the core engineering team, giving rise to fears that the global town square might experience a prolonged shut down in the hours ahead.
Someone is projecting multiple messages onto Twitter headquarters building in SF from a neighboring building. pic.twitter.com/VuFqLvDyxT
— Gia Vang (@Gia_Vang) November 18, 2022
Elon Musk had asked Twitter's employees to offer written guarantees by 05:00 p.m. ET on the 17th of November that they would whole-heartedly adopt the Twitter 2.0 vision, entailing adherence to the "extremely hardcore" culture at the company and "working long hours at high intensity." According to Musk, the employees who refused would be let go with salary for three months.
NEW: Twitter just alerted employees that effective immediately, all office buildings are temporarily closed and badge access is suspended. No details given as to why.
— Zoë Schiffer (@ZoeSchiffer) November 17, 2022
As the 05:00 p.m. deadline approached, all of the company's office buildings were "temporarily" closed, and badge access was suspended.
3 hours left for Twitter employees to decide whether to stay with @elonmusk or quit.
Here are different perspectives of Twitter and big tech employees on the ultimatum.
— Blind (@TeamBlind) November 17, 2022
This became necessary as around 75 percent of Twitter's employees indicated that they would rather choose to leave the company than work under the new conditions laid down by Musk, giving rise to fears of widespread sabotage. Bear in mind that the company already fired around 50 percent of its pre-takeover workforce a few weeks back. The latest spell of mass resignations has significantly debilitated the company's ability to maintain routine operations.
Large, long lived distributed systems often *cannot* be restarted. Change over time has created hidden, circular dependencies. The system cannot bootstrap, because it never has.
So there is a very real chance that when @Twitter hits its next outage, it fails “permanently”.
— DM of Engineering 🎲 (@dmofengineering) November 18, 2022
This is doubly important as reports are emerging that the platform's entire core engineering team has chosen to leave, giving rise to platform stability fears.
Meanwhile, DownDetector highlighted growing cases of outages. These reports have, since then, subsided.
SOME OF TWITTER EMPLOYEES SAID TO BE RETURNING BACK TO TWITTER HQ
— First Squawk (@FirstSquawk) November 18, 2022
Nonetheless, there are indications that Elon Musk and his core supporters at the company have managed to lure back at least some of the employees who had chosen to leave.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 18, 2022
As the fate of the global town square now hangs in the balance, Elon Musk is doing what he usually does extremely well: trolling.
Do you think the social media platform will be able to rebound from this existential crisis? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.