Elon Musk has defended his decision to fire half of Twitter’s workforce, saying the company was losing $4m a day.
“Regarding Twitter’s reduction in force, unfortunately there is no choice when the company is losing over $4M/day,” Musk wrote on Friday evening.
There are concerns Twitter could water down content moderation but Musk said the firm’s policies remain “absolutely unchanged”.
Musk officially closed his $44 billion deal to acquire Twitter late last month, and afterward, he quickly fired several of the company’s top executives. The SpaceX and Tesla CEO also dissolved Twitter’s board of directors, appointing himself as CEO of the company.
As reports emerged on Friday that thousands of staff at Twitter around the world were losing their jobs, questions were asked over the future of employees responsible for taking down harmful material.
Twitter sent an email to its employees on Thursday preparing them for the personnel cuts, writing that its leadership planned to begin the “difficult process of reducing our global workforce on Friday.”
“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,” read the email.
Online safety groups and campaigners have suggested Musk might relax moderation policies, making Twitter less effective at removing hate-speech and disinformation from the platform.
Musk said on Friday that Twitter is experiencing a “massive drop in revenue” following his takeover, which he attributed to organizations pressuring advertisers to cut ties with the company in anticipation of changes to the platform’s community guidelines.
“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,” wrote Musk.