Elon Musk has said to his employees that Twitter might go bankrupt as people are leaving the platform. Also, there has been a warning from a U.S. privacy regulator, and the company’s trust and safety leader has left the company.
Robin Wheeler is the company’s top ad sales executive and it is being said that she will be leaving the company too.
Earlier in the day, in his first company-wide email, Musk warned that Twitter would not be able to “survive the upcoming economic downturn” if it fails to boost subscription revenue to offset falling advertising income, three people who have seen the message told Reuters.
Yoel Roth, who has overseen Twitter’s response to combat hate speech, misinformation, and spam on the service, resigned on Thursday, two people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission said it was watching Twitter with “deep concern” after the three privacy and compliance officers left. These resignations might mean that Twitter will be at risk of violating regulatory orders.
Musk attorney Alex Spiro told some employees in an email late on Thursday that Twitter would remain in compliance.
“We spoke to the FTC today about our continuing obligations and have a constructive ongoing dialogue,” Spiro wrote.
He stated that only Twitter, not individual employees, could be held liable against the orders.
“I understand that there have been employees at Twitter who do not even work on the FTC matter commenting that they could (go) to jail if we were not in compliance – that is simply not how this works,” he wrote.
Musk also included in the email that working remotely will no longer be an option and the office hours would be 40 hours per week at least.
Twitter has $13 billion in debt after the deal and faces interest payments totaling close to $1.2 billion in the next 12 months. It is being claimed that these payments are larger than Twitter’s cash flow.
“We are tracking recent developments at Twitter with deep concern,” Douglas Farrar, the FTC’s director of public affairs, told Reuters.
“No CEO or company is above the law, and companies must follow our consent decrees. Our revised consent order gives us new tools to ensure compliance, and we are prepared to use them,” Farrar said.
U.S. President Joe Biden said on Wednesday that Musk’s “cooperation and/or technical relationships with other countries is worthy of being looked at.”
Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG.N) said on Thursday it had pulled back its paid and owned content on Twitter “while we gain a better understanding of the direction of the platform under its new leadership.”