Now that Elon Musk, the owner of Twitter, has taken over the company and gotten rid of some top usurpers, hints are being made that President Donald J. Trump may see his account re-instated as early as Monday and the left is extremely unhappy and having temper tantrums.
Twitter’s CEO Parag Agrawal, the chief financial officer Ned Segal and the top lawyer for the firm, Vijaya Gadde, were culled just hours after Musk finalized the $44 billion acquisition last night.
Everyone should be very happy for the newly wealthy Twitter team- right?
The platform’s co-founder Biz Stone quickly took to Twitter to thank them for their ‘collective contribution to Twitter’, adding ‘Massive talents, all, and beautiful humans each!’
Sean Edgett, the company’s general counsel, and chief customer officer Sarah Personette were also pushed out, in a further cleansing of the company.
“Musk himself will take over as CEO, a source told Bloomberg – although it may only be an interim role.
The fired Twitter executives were hastily shuttled from the building, sources told The Washington Post. Billionaire Musk is set to hold a company-wide town hall meeting today,” The Daily Mail reported, adding:
“Twitter’s engineers could no longer make changes to code as of noon yesterday in San Francisco, part of an effort to ensure that nothing about the product changed ahead of the deal closing. In a securities filing on April 14, Musk said he did not have confidence in Twitter’s management and initially vowed to sack 75 percent of the workforce when he formally bought the tech giant.”
The left was miserable, especially Rob Reiner, who commented on Trump’s return:
Rumor has it that one Sociopathic Pathologically Lying Criminal Racist Misogynistic Fascist is returning to this platform. Let’s celebrate by drowning him in a Blue Wave.
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) October 28, 2022
Agrawal, who has repeatedly clashed with Musk over the number of users Twitter has, will walk away from his job with $42 million, after being chief executive officer for just under a year.
His total compensation for 2021 was $30.4 million – largely in stock awards – after he was handed the top position following Jack Dorsey’s resignation last November.
Twitter’s former top lawyer Gadde, who earned $17 million in 2021, was reportedly in tears in April when Musk’s takeover first came to light. She has now been paid out $12.5 million for her troubles, Insider said.
Ex-CFO Segal – who was the man behind Mr Trump’s Twitter ban – also received the handsome sum of $25.4 million after being fired by Musk on Thursday evening.
And former CCO Personette was handed $11.2 million as part of Musk’s house clearance.
Agrawal took over from Jack Dorsey when he stood down as CEO in November 2021.
He has frequently clashed with Musk over Twitter’s user numbers, with Musk claiming the social media platform exaggerates how many users it has and downplays the number of spam accounts, fakes or bots.
Agrawal insisted that only around 5 percent of Twitter’s accounts were bots, which infuriated Musk. Musk responded to Agrawal’s lengthy explanation of their calculations with a ‘poop’ emoji.
The pair also argued in private.
Ned Segal, 48
Chief Financial Officer since 2017
2021 compensation: $18.9 million
It was Segal who, in February 2021, announced that Twitter’s ban on Donald Trump was permanent.
Musk has said that decision was wrong, and he intends to reverse it.
‘The way our policies work, when you’re removed from the platform, you’re removed from the platform, whether you’re a commentator, you’re a CFO, or you are a former or current public official,’ he told CNBC.
‘Remember, our policies are designed to make sure that people are not inciting violence, and if anybody does that, we have to remove them from the service and our policies don’t allow people to come back.’
Segal told The Wall Street Journal that investing Twitter’s corporate cash in crypto assets such as bitcoin ‘doesn’t make sense right now.’
Vijaya Gadde, 48
Head of Legal Policy since 2011
2021 compensation: $17 million
Gadde, described as Twitter’s ‘moral compass’, was a passionate defender of Twitter’s role as a censor and arbitrator. She was long considered one of the people who would be fired first by Musk.
In October 2019 she was the architect of the idea to stop political advertising on the platform, and shortly before the election she played a key role in the decision to suspend The New York Post’s account when it reported on Hunter Biden’s laptop. Twitter claimed it violated the company policy against promoting hacked material; critics were angered by the heavy-handedness, and Twitter later apologized.
In January 2021, it was Gadde who rang then-CEO Jack Dorsey – on vacation in Hawaii – to inform him they were banning Donald Trump, for violating policies against inciting violence.
General Counsel since 2017
2021 compensation: unclear
Edgett, a close ally of Gadde, emailed staff last week to say there were no plans for mass layoffs – a move which may have irked Musk, given the impending takeover.
‘Please note that there will continue to be a great deal of public rumor and speculation as we get closer to closing the deal,’ Edgett wrote.
‘First, we have no confirmation of the buyer’s plans after closing and recommend not following any rumors or leaked documents, but instead awaiting facts from us and the buyer directly.’
Edgett added that there were ‘targeted cost-cutting discussions and plans’ earlier in the year, but those discussions stopped when Twitter and Musk signed a deal. Since then, there have been no plans for company-wide layoffs, he said.
Peiter Zatko, the former head of security, who was fired in January, was seized upon by Musk as an ally in his fight to get to the bottom of the mystery about Twitter’s user numbers.
Zatko’s complaint, in which he accused Twitter of lying about its security practices and violating a 2011 agreement with the Federal Trade Commission, was described by Agrawal and Edgett as false.
‘We have never made a material misrepresentation to a regulator, to our board, to all of you,’ Edgett said. ‘We are in full compliance with our F.T.C. consent decree.’
Personette worked as Twitter’s chief customer officer until she was fired on October 26.
The former CCO Personette was handed $11.2 million as part of Musk’s house clearance.
Just one day before she was culled from the workforce, she wrote on Twitter: ‘Had a great discussion with Elon Musk last evening! Our continued commitment to brand safety for advertisers remains unchanged. Looking forward to the future!’