Just a day after new owner Elon Musk began mass layoffs at Twitter, including the layoff of half of its Indian staff, Twitter’s former India head, Manish Maheshwari, said he didn’t expect it “to happen so quickly.”
Twitter was hit by two things at the same time, he told NDTV.
“One is a looming recession — companies have been tightening their belts. But in this case, there’s the whole Elon factor and the pressure on him to make things better than he inherited,” Maheshwar said. Mr Lee said he held the Twitter position until a year ago.
Speaking of the $8 fee plan for validating the handle, he pointed to a general trend “towards profitability” in addition to layoffs and other planned cost cuts.
“We are already seeing this in startups in India and globally,” he said.
While the number of job cuts in India was not immediately available, sources said employees in sales, engineering and partnerships were “affected” in addition to the two divisions that were disbanded.In short, more than 50% of approximately 200 employees were firedthe source said.
Shirish Andhare, head of product at Twitter India, has removed his name from his Twitter bio, but did not respond to media inquiries, capital control report.
On the rationale behind the huge and rapid change – Elon Musk took ownership a week ago – Mr Maheshwari said: “I think one thing is clear. There is a little integration…. ..key functions will be performed centrally, such as engineering and content moderation.” This means less focus on regional specificities.
“Usually things like this take time. There is knowledge transfer and handover of functions. Here, they seem to take a high-level view of, ‘Okay, are you doing a critical product, are you doing a critical revenue? A stream or a set of clients? If the answer is no, you’re fired,” he explained.
“I think it’s very harsh and sketchy,” he added.
He described the company’s work culture while he was there. “We support each other. The focus is on learning and teaching. The focus is on building something with the local context in mind. That’s all changing.”
When asked about advertisers delaying Twitter ad spend as content moderation hits by layoffs, he said “brand safety” is important to advertisers. “They need to make sure their ads are showing next to the right content.”
Content moderation—for example, flagging or removing misleading and hateful content—has been affected since Elon Musk took office. He said “activists” against free speech had misled the company.