Twitter surprises staff by closing offices until next week

In a surprise move on Thursday, Twitter closed its offices, telling staff not to return until Monday, November 21. To ensure that no one tries to access any of its sites, badge access has also been suspended.

It’s unclear why Twitter has decided to temporarily close its offices, but it comes at a chaotic time for the social media platform following its $44 billion takeover by billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk in late October .

“Effective immediately, we are temporarily closing our office buildings and all badge sign-ins will be suspended,” the widely reported message to Twitter staffers said. “The offices will reopen on Monday 21 November. Thanks for your flexibility. Please continue to abide by company policy by refraining from discussing confidential company information on social media, with the press or elsewhere.”

He added, “We look forward to working with you on the exciting future of Twitter.”

The move to close the offices may be linked to recent reports that Musk told remaining Twitter employees they had to sign a pledge to work “long hours at high intensity” or leave the company, according to a Washington Post report.

Anyone who refused to sign the pledge by today – Thursday – would be asked to leave and received three months’ severance pay, the report said. Twitter management may have concluded that closing offices now and suspending access to badges will give it time to sort through commitments and reshape its workforce for Monday. However, some reports have suggested that hundreds of workers have refused to sign the pledge, effectively quitting their jobs.

If Twitter is undergoing a round of mass layoffs, the loss of so many personnel could jeopardize the functionality of the platform for its approximately 230 million users worldwide.

Shortly after Musk acquired the company just over three weeks ago, the CEO, CFO and entire board of directors received their marching orders. Days later, 3,700 employees, amounting to nearly half of the workforce, were laid off in a bid to save money, and reports this week suggest Twitter too has laid off about 5,000 contract employees.

Looking at the current situation, it seems that the next few days could be critical for the survival of Twitter.

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