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Rough times for Twitter

From: Akira Urushibata
Subject: Rough times for Twitter
Date: Mon, 7 Nov 2022 07:44:11 +0900 (JST)

Twitter, now owned by Elon Musk, is going through a major upheaval.
According to Musk the company is losing 4 million dollars a day.
Half of the workforce will depart in a massive layoff, raising
concerns that there may not be enough staff left to monitor harmful

Twitter is also exploring new venues of raising money.  One is
making authorized accounts, previously available to celebrities and
public officials for free, open to all for a charge.  Some are 
worried that imposters make take advantage of this feature.
Twitter, with its urgent need to raise money, may prod a small team
to implement it as quickly as possible.

I request fellow list members to be on the alert.  Someone may
set up an account pretending to be Richard M Stallman or some other
influential programmer, and be granted verification.  The account may
not last long but significant damage can be done with no more than a
few tweets.

Elon Musk paid 44 billion dollars to acquire Twitter.  Many observers
now feel certain that the unreasonably high price has led to savage
cost-cutting measures.  What people don't notice is that Musk got much
free software as well.  More accurately he got access thereto in the
form of experienced engineers who know what free tools are available
and how best to apply them.  Many of them are now leaving Twitter
and that means the firm is losing access to free software.

Because free software is free (as in "free beer") the loss does not
immediately show up in the accounts.  Neither does the effect of any
inappropriate tweet made by the maverick owner.  Being invisible loss
of this nature evades the attention of most observers, especially
financial experts.  It is possible that even Elon Musk fails to
understand the extent of the problem, for as we all know, he is one
character especially fond of the money that he can count.


Twitter layoffs: Elon Musk's Twitter cuts jobs across the company
CNN Business

Former Twitter chief Jack Dorsey issues apology amid mass layoffs
The Guardian

Confusion and Frustration Reign as Elon Musk Cuts Half of Twitter's Staff
New York Times


   The cuts were so haphazard that at one late-night meeting about the
   Twitter Blue subscription product, at least one worker was locked
   out of the company's systems during the call, according to three
   people with knowledge of the meeting and internal messages viewed
   by The New York Times.


   By early Friday, the scale of the layoffs by Elon Musk, Twitter's
   new owner, was becoming clear: Roughly half of the company's work
   force, or about 3,700 jobs, had been eliminated, four people with
   knowledge of the matter said. The cuts hit across many divisions,
   including the engineering and machine learning teams, the trust and
   safety teams that manage content moderation, and the sales and
   advertising departments. Rarely have layoffs this deep been made by
   a single individual at a tech company.


   At the same time, some advertisers, which provide 90 percent of
   Twitter's revenue, have paused their spending on the platform,
   citing fears over how the site's content might change under
   Mr. Musk. That pullback accelerated on Friday as advertisers like
   Volkswagen Group joined the growing boycott. Civil rights groups
   have repeatedly warned that loosening Twitter's content rules might
   lead to a rise in toxic speech.

Twitter confirms fee for blue-tick verification after Musk takeover
BBC News

Twitter users jump to Mastodon - but what is it?

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