Elon Musk reversed Twitter’s work-from-home policy and ordered its staff back into the office, days after firing 3,700 employees.
The new owner of the social media site told staff in an email that “the road ahead is difficult and will require a lot of work to be successful”.
The CEO of Tesla added that working from home is no longer allowed except in special circumstances, as such cases are personally investigated by Musk.
“Teleworking is no longer allowed, unless you have a special exception.” Management will send the exception lists to me for review and approval,” Musk wrote.
He added that the new policy, reported by Bloomberg, would take effect starting Thursday for at least 40 hours a week.
Musk fired about half of the company’s 7,500-strong workforce last Friday, after buying it for $44bn (£38.7bn) the week before. At the same time, he said Twitter had suffered a hiatus in advertising spending that had caused a “major decline in revenue”. Twitter makes most of its more than $5 billion in annual revenue from advertising.
The company has started rolling out Twitter Blue, its new subscription service, in the UK. Users who pay £6.99 a month get a blue tick next to their username, as well as early access to expected features such as bookmark folders and the ability to change the color of the app icon. Musk hopes Twitter Blue will reduce the company’s reliance on advertising.
Despite the CEO’s promise last week that Blue’s global pricing would be adjusted “in line with purchasing power parity,” an economic measure of the króna’s exchange rate that takes into account the cost of living in various countries, Musk appears to have given up on Apple. . The subscription service is billed through Apple’s in-app purchases, which locked Twitter into charging £6.99 in the UK to equal $7.99 in the US.
Musk tried to reassure advertisers about his plans for the company in a session on Twitter’s audio forum, Spaces, on Wednesday.
Major brands including General Motors, United Airlines, breakfast cereal maker General Mills and others have paused buying ads on Twitter as they monitor whether Musk’s earlier comments about being a “libertarian” will lead to more hate speech and divisive content on the platform.
Among the brands on Wednesday’s call were Deutsche Bank, Chevron, Nissan, Air Canada and Audi, which have paused Twitter ads. American retailer REI was also present and said after the call that its ads were still pending, according to the Associated Press.
Musk said on the call that he was still planning a board of directors that would deal with inappropriate content and consider reopening accounts, but that it would take “several months” to convene. He said it would be advisory and “not a governing body”.