Twitter fires senior exec who slept on office floor, led Twitter Blue relaunch

After Musk’s “extremely hardcore” email to employees in November 2022, Crawford’s image of sleeping in the office went viral

Elon Musk
The letter from Elon Musk’s lawyer asserted that at least one Microsoft app had supplied Twitter data to a number of virtual locations that “reference a government entity or agency”. File photo

Twitter has embarked on yet another round of layoffs and senior executive Esther Crawford is among the affected nearly 50 employees. Crawford was heading various key projects like the Twitter Blue verification subscription and the upcoming payments platform.

The layoffs also impacted Martijn de Kuijper, the founder of newsletter platform Revue, which was acquired by Twitter in 2021. According to Platformer’s Zoe Schiffer, Crawford was among the remaining members of Twitter’s product team following Musk’s formal takeover in late October 2022. She also got viral after her photo of sleeping at the Twitter office to meet a deadline surfaced online.

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The viral photo primarily symbolised Musk’s “extremely hardcore” work style for Twitter employees. To build Twitter 2.0, the new owner wanted workers to work for “long hours at high intensity”. On the other hand, a separate Reuters report claims that Twitter has laid off 200 employees, contrary to 50 jobs cuts. After the fresh round of layoffs over the weekend, speculations are rife that Musk “may be about to install a new regime at the company”.

Meanwhile, Crawford has also posted a cryptic tweet, hinting at her abrupt exit from the social media giant. The tweet states, “The worst take you could have from watching me go all-in on Twitter 2.0 is that my optimism or hard work was a mistake. Those who jeer and mock are necessarily on the sidelines and not in the arena. I’m deeply proud of the team for building through so much noise and chaos.”

Also read: Twitter Singapore employees asked to vacate office, work from home

Crawford joined Twitter in December 2020 after the social media company acquired the screen-sharing social app Squad. Crawford was the CEO of Squad before the acquisition. Following the transition, she got involved with Twitter’s design, engineering and product departments. After Musk’s “extremely hardcore” email to employees in November 2022, Crawford’s image of sleeping in the office went viral. In a tweet, she wrote, “When your team is pushing round the clock to make deadlines sometimes you #SleepWhereYouWork.”

Initially, Twitter laid off half of its workforce, and later some left on their own after Musk’s email. The company keeps sacking employees in batches and takes drastic cost-cutting measures under Musk’s leadership. Before the takeover, Twitter had around 7,500 employees. Currently, the total count could be around 2,000 employees, going by Musk’s own numbers.