“The source of the allegations is a ‘disgruntled’ employee,” the tech billionaire said
A new report by US journalist Casey Newton has Elon Musk in hot water.
Newton’s story, published on his website Platformer with colleague Joë Schiffer, claimed that at 2:30 a.m. on February 13, Twitter employees received an emergency message and went back to work “to fix a problem.”
According to the journalist, the problem was that Musk’s tweet about the Super Bowl received fewer likes than a similar post by US President Joe Biden.
Biden’s tweet, in which he said he was rooting for the Philadelphia Eagles football team, was viewed by 29.5 million people. The US president wrote in the post:
“As your president, I don’t pick a favorite team, but as Jill Biden’s husband, fly, Eagles, fly.”
Musk’s tweet, in which he wrote “Let’s go Eagles”, received only 9.1 million views and the businessman later deleted the tweet.
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After this incident, the businessman’s cousin James Musk allegedly called Twitter engineers to work overtime via the Slack application.
Musk then allegedly addressed his team in person. Accordingly, the tech billionaire gave his employees an ultimatum. Engineers were told that they would be fired if they did not solve the problem.
The engineers reportedly worked through the night to evaluate various hypotheses as to why Musk’s tweets were not reaching enough users and to test possible solutions.
According to Newton, in recent weeks Musk has been obsessed with the amount of engagement his posts have received. Around 80 people on Twitter are allegedly tasked with checking the engagement of Musk’s tweets.
“The source of the allegations is a ‘disgruntled’ employee”
Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX as well as Twitter, denied Platformer’s report. The billionaire said that the person who gave the site this information was a “disgruntled employee” and that the company would take legal action against him.
“Several major media platforms have reported that my tweets spiked above normal levels earlier this week,” Musk also posted on Twitter:
“Looking at my tweet likes and views over the last 6 months, especially in terms of followers, this appears to be false. We had a bug that briefly caused replies to be given the same importance as primary tweets, but this has been fixed.”
Allegedly fired an engineer
In previous weeks, the Twitter CEO made his account closed for a day to test whether this would increase views.
Musk did this after some users said that their views had decreased due to recent changes on Twitter.
A report, also published on Platformer, claimed that Musk gathered a group of engineers in a room at Twitter headquarters to discuss the issue.
Musk was reported to have said, “I have over 100 million followers and I only get 10s of thousands of views.”
One engineer allegedly thought that the user’s interest in Musk was waning and voiced this out loud at that meeting.
It was then reported that Musk fired the engineer.
Platformer, Livemint, The Chainsaw