Twitter Employee Compares Mass Layoffs to GoT’s Red Wedding

As Elon Musk takes over Twitter, an uneasy employee likens the company’s mass layoffs to the famous Red Wedding episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones.

Game of Thrones Red Wedding imagery with Twitter logo

As Elon Musk officially takes over Twitter, an employee compared the company’s mass layoffs to the popular “Red Wedding” episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones.

Twitter was recently thrown into chaos as an estimated 3,700 of Twitter’s 7,500 employees were let go by the SpaceX CEO. According to The New York Times, one employee wrote on Slack, “Has the red wedding started?” The quip references the Season 3 episode of Game of Thrones called “The Rains of Castamere,” wherein a massacre dubbed The Red Wedding took place during the War of the Five Kings. The shocking event saw many fan-favorite characters slaughtered.

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After Musk’s deal to take over the company closed on Oct. 27, it was hinted that layoffs were imminent. Many of Twitter’s employees were informed about their job status via e-mail while others found out by being locked out of the internal system. When the layoffs occurred, Twitter barred all employees from entering its offices, including those who were not being let go. A notice sent to workers read, “To help ensure the safety of each employee as well as Twitter systems and customer data, our offices will be temporarily closed and all badge access will be suspended.” Not long after, another report claimed the company asked some laid-off employees to return to their roles.

In October, Musk purchased Twitter for a collective $44 billion after beginning to buy shares that reached a 5% stake in the company. By April 2022, he owned a 9% stake, which made him the company’s largest shareholder. The Tesla CEO eventually secured funding worth $46.5 billion to buy Twitter, with his bid ultimately concluding at $44 billion.

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A month after announcing the Twitter takeover, Musk said the deal was “on hold” due to a report that 5% of Twitter’s active users were spam accounts. This caused Twitter’s shares to take a dip, and its board of directors made moves to hold him to the deal. Executives formally sued Musk for breaching a legally binding agreement to purchase the company, which ultimately led Musk to reverse his decision. When the acquisition finally became official, Musk fired Parag Agrawal, whom he replaced as CEO.

Elon Musk’s Twitter Is Controversial, To Say the Least

Musk has already announced moves that will change Twitter significantly. The company recently rolled out a monthly subscription charge for a “blue checkmark,” which indicates accounts that are verified on the platform. The CEO believes this will mitigate spam accounts, but he has also seen pushback from several high-profile personalities who believe it will make it easier for users to impersonate others. Twitter’s official website states that “blue checkmarks may be taken away at any time for any reason at all … including but not limited to our rules around spam, ban evasion, and impersonation.”

Source: The New York Times, via Deadline