I worked at Twitter for over five years. I put everything I had into building amazing things there. But I didn’t just give; Twitter and its people gave back to me more than I could have ever asked for. It’s disheartening to see what is happening there today, under new management.
For all of my lack of visible emotion at work, I cared. I really cared. I cared about the product, yes, but I also cared about those around me. And in return, I saw how much the Twitter leadership cared as well – and again, not just about the product, but the people as well.
My first full day out of new hire orientation in 2015 was the first round of layoffs Twitter had given. It was a solemn day. No one wanted to meet me, as they were mourning the loss of their fellow team members. I understood and did my best to stay out of the way. But at the same time, it was all handled as humanely as something as such could have been. Everyone was greeted with apologies, addressed with kindness and care.
From 2015 to 2022, Twitter promoted a healthy work/life balance. Everyone was given time off when they needed it. No one was subject to forced late-nights and weekends. In fact, I remember very clearly having managers discouraging people that were working on weekends – instead encouraging them to do something else with their precious and valuable time.
The past two weeks have been the opposite. I heard of people being forced to come in from PTO to help ship an unimportant (large) change before the weekend. They worked until at least 1am on a Friday night to get a pointless feature out the door – one that wouldn’t make or break anything outside of the new owner’s sense of superiority over his employees.
I’ve seen pictures of people sleeping in the office overnight in order to ship a change to make everyone pay for a little blue check. Why? $8 per month won’t make a profit when you clearly won’t be able to get any sort of volume signing up for such a thing.
I’m sad for any and all who have had to endure this past year. Through uncertainty leading up, all the way to impending doom, to experiencing it, and being thrown out the door with this: the most impersonal email you could ever receive.
Fuck you, new Twitter management. You’ve ruined something great and hurt too many people. What’s more is that I think this is just the start.