Alas, poor Twitter. Once upon a time, it was fun and useful, helping foment political change and providing a home for succinct quips. But those days are long gone, it appears, and the company is reportedly planning to cut another eight percent of staff — almost exactly a year after a similar round of cuts.
It was October of 2015 when Twitter alerted the California Employment Development Department that a "mass layoff" was eminent, with a reported 336 staffers getting the boot (240 of those in San Francisco). In the intervening year, the state of the nest has not improved: Though the company offered itself for sale, the abundance of abusive users operating unchecked on the site scared off all potential suitors — and the troll threat isn't insignificant, with the nonprofit Anti-Defamation League Task Force on Harassment and Journalism reporting that users posted 2.6 million anti-Semitic tweets from August 2015 to July 2016. One can see, perhaps, that this might not be user base worth acquiring.
Meanwhile, issues arose inside the coop as news broke that beleaguered former tech CEO/questionably positioned advocate for the homeless Greg Gopman had been hired by the company. Following coverage of his arrival at the company, Gopman says he was fired.
Stories like these — and many others, far too many to link to without turning this page into one big hyperlinked mess — suggest that the once well-feathered company is now in a bit of disarray, a suggestion further confirmed by reports from Bloomberg and others late Monday that the company would again shed another 300 or so workers "as soon as this week."
"Planning for the cuts is still fluid," Bloomberg reports, "and the number could change." An email to Twitter requesting comment has not been responded to at publication time.
One of the things speeding up the layoff timeline might be Twitter's quarterly earnings announcement, which is scheduled for this Thursday. But as TechCrunch notes, even that seems troubled, with an announcement Monday afternoon that the company had changed the time of its earnings call to 4 a.m. PT.
In a press release, Twitter says that "The release and conference call, which had been originally scheduled for post-market on Thursday, have been rescheduled, in response to analyst requests, to avoid overlapping with several other earnings announcements in the Internet sector scheduled for Thursday afternoon."
But TechCrunch isn't buying it, saying "Normally tech companies tend to report after regular-day trading ends at around 1:00 p.m. PST. There are a lot of reasons for this — but, in general, it’s tradition. And it’s less of a nightmare for the Left Coast." TechCrunch floats a "conspiracy theory" suggesting that by announcing when most tech journos are asleep, any bad news might be missed/get buried? Or something.
But never fear, as TechCrunch says "We’ll still have people up to watch the earnings report." Good for them! We won't be up (unless Caleb's night terrors kick in again) but if something thrilling is announced (it won't be) we'll be sure to let you know.
Previously: Twitter Layoffs Affect At Least 240 In SF
Disney And Salesforce Dropped Twitter Bids Because Of Trolls
Anti-Defamation League: 2.6 Million Anti-Semitic Messages Posted On Twitter Over Past Year
Greg Gopman, Former AngelHack CEO Who Called Homeless People 'Hyenas', Fired By Twitter