When it’s cloudy, there’s a wolf. This was probably the opinion of Twitter employees with whom Elon Musk spoke for the first time on Thursday during a video conference. The head of Tesla and Space-X remained vague on key topics in the eyes of employees concerned about the idea of not respecting certain values of the company. All this, without confirming with certainty that he will complete the download of the platform.
During this meeting, which was specially transmitted by the “New York Times” and the Bloomberg agency through anonymous sources, Elon Musk expressed his passion for the social network, his favorite way of expression. But he also said he was not satisfied with the company’s financial results. “At the moment, the costs exceed the revenues. “It’s not a great situation,” he said, according to two news outlets.
Citing the success of Chinese apps TikTok and WeChat as an example, Elon Musk set an ambitious goal: to reach one billion users when Twitter currently has only 229 million active users who are called “monetizing” or who can be exposed. on platform advertising.
Call for less moderation
In addition to business, employees mostly questioned him about his political vision and his intentions regarding corporate culture and working conditions. There are no clear answers to these aspects. As last April, the businessman, followed by more than 98 million users on the social network, reiterated the importance in his eyes of less strict moderation of content, within the limits defined by law.
This concept contradicts that of many Twitter employees, associations and elected Democrats, who, on the contrary, are asking social networks to better combat hate speech, harassment and misinformation.
Disagreement over telecommuting
Elon Musk also remained undecided on the sensitive issue of teleworking. The position of the head of Tesla on this topic is well-known: recently he demanded from his employees to work at least 40 hours a week face to face, otherwise they would lose their jobs.
While acknowledging that Twitter employees do a different job than those who design and assemble cars, Elon Musk reaffirmed his face-to-face preference on Thursday. “Bias must definitely be in favor of personal work, but if someone is doing an exceptional job, teleworking can be fine,” said Elon Musk, according to the people who attended the meeting. A speech that contradicts the speech of the current leaders of Twitter, who are committed to enabling all their 7,500 employees to work remotely …
Finally, what is more worrying for employees on Twitter, Elon Musk did not specify whether he intends to reduce the workforce. He simply mentioned taking into account the group’s performance, without further details. “Anyone who has a significant contribution should not worry,” he added, confirming that he intends to influence the strategic orientations and improvement of the platform’s products.
Markets are not convinced
All of this underscores the “contrast between Musk culture and Twitter’s DNA,” said Wedbush analyst Dan Ives. On Wall Street, investors also don’t seem convinced of the compatibility of capricious billionaires and Twitter. At $ 37, the share price of the social network remains 30% lower than the price proposed by Elon Musk in mid-April.
The latter has secured the support of several large fortunes and investment companies to generate $ 44 billion as this takeover must cost. But he remains vague about his plans and threatens to withdraw his offer due to the number of fake online accounts, which are too many in his eyes.
SpaceX employees can no longer stand their boss
Elona Maska doesn’t just annoy employees on Twitter. The richest man in the world has also alienated his employees at SpaceX, his space exploration company. Some of them resent his behavior in the public sphere, “a source of distraction and shame.” They call on the company to “publicly condemn” its way of tweeting, in a letter that must soon be delivered to the president of SpaceX, according to the specialized site The Verge.