The Twitter layoff saga has taken yet another dramatic turn as one now-ex-employee of the company confronted Musk on the social media platform and made quite the public spectacle of an exit interview.
A former Twitter employee named Haraldur Þorleifsson, an Icelandic entrepreneur and philanthropist who founded the creative agency Ueno, Tweeted at Musk claiming that he lost access to his work computer at Twitter and wanted clarification on whether or not he was still employed by the company.
9 days ago the access to my work computer was cut, along with about 200 other Twitter employees.
However your head of HR is not able to confirm if I am an employee or not. You’ve not answered my emails.
Maybe if enough people retweet you’ll answer me here?
— Halli (@iamharaldur) March 6, 2023
Musk quickly quipped back at the now-former employee, asking him “What work have you been doing?” After more back and forth, the former employee listed a slew of tasks he allegedly accomplished while working at Twitter.
Musk asked for photo evidence, and the squabble continued before Musk ended (for his part) the exchange with two crying laughing emojis.
You locked my computer. I don’t have access to any pics or docs. If you want to have it opened I can get you things.
— Halli (@iamharaldur) March 7, 2023
During the exchange, said that Twitter’s HR representative did in fact “miraculously reply” and confirm that he had been let go.
The man, who was dubbed Iceland’s ‘Person of the Year’ by several local outlets for his work on improving accessbility for the disabled in his country, doubled down by the end and asked Musk if he was going to be paid out in full for his disability after being let go.
Things then took an even uglier turn, after Musk responded to a Tweet about the debacle from a separate Twitter user saying that the now ex-employee was “individually wealthy” as well as “did no actual work: and claimed he had a disability that prohibited him from being able to type.
He has a prominent, active Twitter account and is wealthy. The reason he confronted me in public was to get a big payout.
From what I’ve been told, he’s done almost no work for the past four months, middle-management or otherwise.
Despite his claims on Twitter that he did… https://t.co/LGuAlg4Eew
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 7, 2023
“Despite his claims on Twitter that he did work, it turns out he told HR that he couldn’t work because he couldn’t type, but was, over the same period, typing up a storm on Twitter,” Musk wrote. “Yet there are many people on Twitter defending him. This hurts my faith in humanity.”
After seeing this, the man took to his own account to once again call out Musk and explain that he is wheelchair-bound due to Muscular Dystrophy and told his story of how he was diagnosed, and how he sold his company to Twitter in a 17 Tweet-long thread.
He also noted why he chose to confront Musk publicly.
“The reason I asked you in public is because you (or anyone else at Twitter) didn’t reply to my private messages,” he said. “You had every right to lay me off. But it would have been nice to let me know!”
Less than two weeks ago, Musk laid off another 200 Twitter employees, which was roughly 10% of the company’s total remaining workforce.
Twitter is now estimated to have less than 2,000 employees.