Elon takes over Twitter
Twitter has a new CEO. And he'd like to see your code, please
Elon Musk took over Twitter on Thursday like a military general who had assumed power by force, purging the company’s ruling regime and replacing it with the singular effect of his personality. “The bird is freed,” he tweeted a few hours after his $44 billion purchase closed, and he had become the CEO of a newly private company. And more than 2 million people clicked the “like” button, eager to see what the world’s richest man might have in store for them.
From the outside, and especially to his supporters, it looked as if Twitter finally had the strong leader it has lacked for so long. His Tesla is a phenomenon that helped usher electric vehicles into the mainstream, and his SpaceX has inspired countless imaginations with its reusable rockets. Meanwhile, his growing embrace of right-wing politics has attracted a fan base eager to see a social network that felt more like the free-for-all of Twitter’s past.
From the inside, though, Musk’s arrival has been experienced primarily as chaos. For more than a day now, employees have gone without any official, company-wide communication from their new leaders. An all-hands meeting planned for Thursday afternoon was canceled abruptly a few hours after it was announced, presumably since Musk’s purge had begun and the company’s remaining leaders no longer had clear answers to give.
On Friday, though, some engineers began to receive requests from Musk’s intermediaries. He would like to see the most recent software code that they had written, the engineers were told. And he would like them to print the code out and show it to him.
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