Elon Musk met with Twitter employees for the first time on Thursday during an all-hands meeting. Musk addressed the future of Twitter, layoffs, freedom of speech, and aliens. Ahead of his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter, Musk answered employee questions during the hour-long town hall meeting.
An employee asked Musk why he elected to buy Twitter, and he responded, “I love Twitter. I learn a lot from what I learn on Twitter.” He added that Twitter is a “great way to get a message out.”
“Some people use their hair to express themselves, I use Twitter,” he said.
Musk revealed that he doesn’t necessarily need to be the CEO of Twitter, but he is committed to taking an active role in improving the company and being involved in developing new products and features, according to the New York Times.
Musk was asked about potential layoffs at Twitter, and he hinted that there could be terminations.
“Right now, costs exceed revenue. That’s not a great situation,” he said. “The company does need to get healthy.”
He said he believed in meritocracy, and said, “Anyone who is a signification contributor has nothing to worry about.”
On the topic of remote work, Musk noted that it is “much better if you are on location physically.” However, he also said, “If someone can only work remotely and they’re exceptional, it wouldn’t make sense to fire them.”
Musk acknowledged that working at a social media company is much more conducive to working at home versus at a car manufacturer or space exploration company.
Twitter’s remote work policy is “one of the most flexible among U.S. tech companies,” according to Fortune.
Earlier this month, Musk allegedly threatened Tesla employees who do not return to the office.
“If you don’t show up, we will assume you have resigned,” Musk reported told his employees in an email.
Musk outlined where Twitter should be in five to 10 years, “Contributing to a stronger, longer lasting civilization where we are better able to understand the nature of reality.”
The tech billionaire praised the Chinese social media app WeChat. He noted that the app is a one-stop shop for messaging, shopping, and making mobile payments.
“You basically live on WeChat,” Musk stated.
During the question-and-answer session, Musk declared that his goal is for Twitter to have 1 billion users. However, the Tesla CEO also said he wants to rid the platform of bots.
Twitter maintains that fake or spam accounts are fewer than 5% of its total 229 million daily active users. If Musk discovers that there are more than 5% of spam bots, he may attempt to renegotiate the $44 billion deal that he signed in April.
Musk told Twitter employees that the mission of SpaceX is “to make life multi-planetary and thus improve the problem lifespan of consciousness.”
The SpaceX CEO said he has “seen no actual evidence for aliens.”
Musk told Twitter employees that he has “moderate politics,” and is “pretty close to center.”
He said that if 10% of the far left and far right are upset, then Twitter is doing the right thing.
When it comes to freedom of speech, Musk proclaimed that “pretty outrageous things” should be allowed on Twitter, as long as they don’t violate the law. Musk added that Twitter does not have to promote offensive tweets.
He pointed out that Twitter already provides tools for users to filter out content that they don’t want to see.
CNBC reported, “Musk said the standard is much more than not offending people, it’s that they are entertained and informed.”