Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur, recently disclosed in an interview with a BBC journalist that Twitter now has only around 1,500 employees, down from approximately 7,500 before he acquired the social network for $44 billion in late October 2022. This move marked a significant reduction in the workforce and operations of the company [fired CEO and two other executives just after he officially own Twitter, then cut 50% of staff, then fired all staff in India, ending remote work, then again laid off 50 employees in Feb 2023, Twitter Blue Head Esther Crawford Leaves Company, that’s all in his leadership].
During the interview broadcast on Twitter’s live audio feature Spaces, Musk also talked about his recent labeling of the BBC and other outlets, including U.S. broadcaster NPR, as “state-affiliated media.” He stated that he would alter the label to “publicly funded media.” This is likely to be a more accurate description of the organization’s funding sources, but it also seems to be Musk’s way of showing his disregard for traditional media outlets.
Musk added that Twitter’s total user time was at an all-time high, with 8 million user minutes a day, and that “not all but most” advertisers have returned to Twitter. However, he still expects the company to generate 50% less revenue than last year. This might be a reflection of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the economy.
Regarding Twitter’s subscription revenue, Musk downplayed its significance, stating that he did not know if Twitter Blue was “a giant revenue stream.” This comment is surprising, given that he previously indicated that he expected half of Twitter’s revenue to come from subscriptions. It remains to be seen if Musk’s lack of enthusiasm for Twitter Blue will have any impact on its adoption and revenue generation.
Musk offered a few details about his plans for Twitter. He confirmed reports that Twitter had purchased graphics processing units to pursue an artificial intelligence project and repeated that he wants Twitter to become an “everything app.” However, he did not provide any specific information about these plans.