Twitter will not fade away in a controlled demolition

Elon Musk keeps sinking to new depths. In his latest escapade, one of his employees was so baffled by the confusion that reigns at Twitter, he asked for clarification on whether he was still employed or not. He responded by firing him, insulting him, and ridiculing him for having a disability.

That’s a lawsuit right there. The man’s disability is muscular dystrophy — he’s going to die from it. Also, one of the reasons for the confusion is that his employment was a special case. He’d founded a company that Twitter bought for $100 million, and he’d generously taken his buyout in the form of wages over an extended time, and the whole sum will come due when his employment ends. Like, when Musk fires him.

Also, he seems to be a genuinely good guy, a kind of anti-Musk.

Musk keeps detonating these bombs of incompetence. I agree with this fellow who thinks Twitter is doomed, and the collapse is coming fast.

It’s already real bad over there. Elon Musk said yesterday that ad revenues have fallen 50%. The site is experiencing major outages almost once a week. During the most recent outage earlier this week, Elon was laser-focused on the important stuff: reply-guying Jordan Peterson. The Twitter Blue rollout has been such a disaster that he fired almost the entire team. The company isn’t paying rent on its office space. It recently tried to create a new income stream by selling office plants to employees.

But take a deeper look and the company is in even worse shape than it appears. Twitter has two financial time bombs waiting to go off. My hunch is that Elon will file for bankruptcy as soon as one of these time bombs self-detonates. I can’t say exactly when that will be.

I give it about six months.

The two time bombs are 1) a battery of lawsuits from all those fired employees for unlawful termination, and 2) a collection of massive fines from the FTC and the EU. He can’t avoid those. He paid too much for a company he bought as a present to his ego, and he’s been making it cataclysmically worse. I’m just biding my time, waiting for the inevitable and spectacular splash when Musk crashes.


  1. nomaduk says

    One of the few joyful things left in this stupidest of all stupid timelines is watching the crashing and burning of Twitter and — one can only hope — of Elon Musk.

  2. nomaduk says

    Also, one can only hope that Haraldur Thorliefsson responds to Musk’s half-arsed apologies with a simple ‘fuck you’, and demands his money.

  3. Reginald Selkirk says

    In retrospect, not accepting Twitter stock as payment was a smart move, not a selfless gesture.

  4. mordred says

    It’s become a running gag between a friend and mine to close our complaints about our jobs with “But at least we’re not working at Twitter.”
    And there are still tech-bros on the net who defend Musk and his latest fuckups, though they seem to be getting a bit quieter…

  5. says

    Took me a couple reads of the tweet to realize it was Elon Musk saying it. At first, I thought it was an opinion about Musk.

  6. strangerinastrangeland says

    “…when Musk crashes.”

    Looking forward to it, but hope this will not go the “Trump way” where the costs of the crash are paid by taxpayers, suppliers and staff and the responsible twat gets out with most of his fortune intact.

  7. sqlrob says

    @Reginald Selkirk:

    4/20 is very Muskian, but I’m wondering about 3/23. He promised grants on 3/24.

  8. numerobis says

    Reginald Selkirk@3 — had Halli taken it in stock he’d have been bought out at $54.20 per share in a lump sum last October, with the sale of his company conducted when TWTR was near the same price. Six of one, half-dozen of the other.

  9. Rich Woods says

    @reginald #4:

    I am picking 04-20 in the Twitter bankruptcy pool.

    Excellent choice. I’m picking 04-19 and 04-21.

  10. rietpluim says

    What @Bronze Dog #6 said. But then again, bloated egos rarely come with a lot of self insight.

  11. rietpluim says

    Also, I can understand why Musk goes after Thorleifsson. Nothing pisses a failing, mediocre, self-centered guy off more than a good guy.

  12. Markus Schäfer says

    I’m also stealing Haraldur Thorleifsson as a name for a badass NPC in my RPG campaign.

  13. wzrd1 says

    So, multiple ADA violations, $75k for the first, $150k for each additional, plus fundamental breach of contract, Elon’s jumped into the passing land and standing on the accelerator on the way to the poor house.
    Plus additional penalties by the state.

    Oh, plus that third outage in a month, after having Tesla engineers look over Twitter’s code, since he had fired all of the programmers who wrote the code. Apparently, scope of work in a contract doesn’t mean anything to him either.
    What is penny stock again?

  14. says

    So glad I jumped off that ship the day Elon came aboard.
    There’s only one way a cruise like this ends–Elon and a few scraggly survivors in a lifeboat, drifting with the current.
    Elon’s the one in the paper hat, facing the wrong way, going “duh, I’m the captain.”

  15. Matt G says

    rietpluim@11- “ Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.” -Mark Twain

  16. Artor says

    Needless to say, Musk is going to stiff Thorliefson on the money he owes the guy. I hope Haraldur is able to reclaim his company when Musk inevitably defaults on the contract.

  17. robro says

    wzrd1 — “Multiple ADA violations”…I suppose this could get complicated if Thorleifsson is still living in Iceland. Twitter could end up with involvement (and fines) from both governments, and Iceland might be a lot harder on Twitter than the US government.

    I don’t have a Twitter account, but I heard that Twitter had a major fail this week because of an API change as part of their project to shutdown free access to the Twitter API, Platformer…which itself sounds like a dumb move. It emerged that due to Muskies staff cuts Twitter has only one site reliability engineer on the project. As part of a roll out, the engineer made a bad configuration change. Doesn’t indicate best practices to me either in terms of staffing or releases.

  18. lasius says

    Come on people, it’s Thorleifsson (actually Þorleifsson). No reason to make fun of his name.

  19. Just a Guy says

    “The man’s disability is muscular dystrophy — he’s going to die from it.”

    You don’t know that. He might get hit by a self-driving Tesla.

  20. billseymour says

    lasius @18:

    … it’s Thorleifsson …

    [off-topic, but this geek is curious]

    The patronym looks like it has two given names in it.

    Was Harald’s father really named Þorleif; or was he the son of Þor who was, in turn, the son of Leif?

    [back to your regularly scheduled broadcasting]

  21. lasius says

    His father was Thorleif, which is not a rare name. What name Thorleif’s father had we can’t tell from only Haraldur’s name.

  22. Alan G. Humphrey says

    There’s a video on Twitter that talks about a way to grift from Twitter’s failings. First it has a brief history on the Circuit City bankruptcy and the jobs many non-employees got by padding their resumes with bogus Circuit City jobs that couldn’t be verified by a non-existent HR dept. It then suggests that the same can be done now with resumes using bogus Twitter employments that cannot be verified by the broken Twitter HR based on its handling of Þorleifsson.

  23. kome says

    It bothers me to no end that Elon/Twitter can simply not pay their rent for months on end and still get to operate out of the rented spaces. The idea that there are no salient and immediate repercussions for that kind of behavior just because you’re rich or you’re a company is so completely foreign to me that I have a hard time accepting that the rich/corporations live in the same reality that I do.

  24. birgerjohansson says

    Sorry to interupt.
    University of Rochester has created a material that is superconducting at practical pressures and temperatures.
    They made sure to have outside researchers witnesses the transition, since news of this magnitude deserve skepticism.
    Creation of electronic chips already can be made with internal pressures higher than the relevant pressure, and the temperature is 69 F or 21 C.
    -Producing components and whole devices of this material is another matter, but the basic science is apparently over the hurdle.
    This reminds me of when computers finally were able to scale up neural networks and create useful AI.

  25. tacitus says

    Musk was later informed of his idiotic mistake and apologized, rescinding the firing, blaming others from not giving him the full picture (of course), like the fact that he would have to pay Halli the balance of 100 million dollars upon termination.

    But if I was Halli, I would say “Nope, you can’t take back my firing”, then take the lump sum and run. If he’s concerned about shortchanging the Icelandic government, I’m sure they’d be more than happy to negotiate a donation to their coffers in lieu of the lost tax revenue. He could probably even arrange to have the money allocated to a specific department to help a favorite cause of his — healthcare, the environment, etc.

  26. mordred says

    @24 That press release sure sounds promising. To good to be true even.
    Would be nice if this doesn’t go the way of cold fusion and ftl neutrinos. I’m eagerly a waiting other researcher’s comments on it.

  27. says

    Years ago, that Stupid idiot frequently tweets his crap on Twitter and brought massive amounts of revenue to the platform to where those in charge tend to look away every time that Stupid Idiot tweets horrible crap that clearly violates Twitter’s TOS while quickly Twitter Jails people who rightfully criticise him (me included). He ended up getting permanently suspended when he did the Clown Show on 1/6. Today, although that Stupid Idiot ended getting reinstated on Twitter, it turning out that it is all in total vain because just like all the rest Everything Trump Touches Dies, including Twitter and Muck’s helping him live up to that saying.

  28. birgerjohansson says

    Mordred @27
    The original article is in Nature, it will have more information.
    I also hope this will stand up to scrutiny.
    As for Musk…

  29. tacitus says

    @24 @27 @29


    Researchers at the University of Rochester (U of R), who previously were forced to retract a controversial claim of room temperature superconductivity at high pressures, are back with an even more spectacular claim. This week in Nature they report a new material that superconducts at room temperature—and not much more than ambient pressures.

    To solve the riddle, the U of R team “should do everything they can to help other groups reproduce it,” says Mikhail Eremets, a physicist at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, whose team discovered the first hydride superconductor in 2015 but failed to replicate the CSH results. “If they will not it will be a disaster.” But this level of cooperation doesn’t appear to be in the cards. Dias says Unearthly Materials, a company he and Salamat founded, is trying to commercialize the new hydride. “We are not going to distribute this material considering the proprietary nature of our process and the intellectual property rights that exist,” Dias said via email.

    Doesn’t sound promising. “We’re not telling anyone how we did it because someone else will steal it!” is the oft repeated excuse of pseudoscientists and scammers.

  30. gijoel says

    I’m a terrible person, but I hope Elon gets Muscular dystrophy. Just so he knows what it’s like to be kicked in the teeth by a narcissistic dickhead.

    That being said I think the irony will be lost on him, as he bleats about how terrible things are for him and start pumping money into quack cures.

  31. Reginald Selkirk says


  32. chrislawson says


    Especially as they would have no difficulty patenting a superconductor that behaves as promised, which would allow them to have it independently tested and legally protect their IP.

  33. says

    Right there with you. I shall toast with a glass of my finest box wine when Twitter finally goes under. Unless someone buys it. Could Amazon or Google turn it around? Would that sale even be legal with antitrust laws? I don’t know, but what I do know is Musk has done irreparable damage to the platform.

  34. John Morales says

    Ray, who cares?

    If it truly fills a niche, then that niche will become occupied should Twitter fall.

    That nectar would still be there, in ecological terms.

  35. wzrd1 says

    @chrislawson, just another way to lock up elemental combinations, in any manner.
    End of the day, not a biggie, but short term, locks up potential that otherwise might be honestly earned.
    “It’s not that I have to win, it’s that everyone else must lose”.

  36. silvrhalide says

    @35 No, Amazon or Google could not turn it around. Both are contracting, not expanding, and are falling down on prior commitments. Given how crappy Amazon is, the sooner it dies (preferably in a fire) the happier I’ll be. Along with all the other businesses and towns Amazon has ruined. Not that the other tech companies are some sort of worker’s paradise. But you have to be extra crappy to force your employees to work in an unairconditioned Pennsylvania warehouse in a declared heatwave until they literally collapse.

    Also, no big companies are riding to Twitter’s rescue because they don’t have the cash resources.

  37. JoeBuddha says

    Checking out Tribel for fun. Hey, can’t be worse than Facebook or Twitter, amirite?

  38. wzrd1 says

    @silvrhalide, especially given I’ve worked within a 1 mile square warehouse in Pennsylvania, where such conditions never happened.
    Oh wait, taxpayers are more generous or something, than a mortal corporation. As in DLA Susquehanna didn’t manage such horrific conditions, but kept the main depot warehouse cool enough for workers to survive.

    Now, excuse me. Just found out Giant stupidmarkets cleaned out my bank account – after charging my food stamps EBT for a large purchase – again.
    Second time, it’s federal fraud charge time, state banishment and I’ve already messaged my bank to forever blacklist them on my account. Alas, it’s unlawful to burn all of their properties to the ground.
    But, I’m now in the wonderful position where I can’t get a pack of toilet paper until the first of next month or this gets cleared up. Again.
    And my mood currently is highly uncivilized, think hanged, drawn and quartered for starters.

  39. says

    Not surprised Musk would be social Darwinist. How is i the same right wing assholes who want to put god back in the schools, also support this fascist POS who believes that people who can’t compete should just die? That is literally something Hitler believed.

  40. StevoR says

    @ ^ Ray Ceeya : Of course Hitler did go the extra step of trying speed up that whole “dying” bit.

    I’m just hoping Musk doesn’t take SpaceX and Tesla with him when he goes -especially the former which ahs suceeded in some pretty brilliant things space flight~wise..

    @28. Owosso Harpist : “ turning out that it is all in total vain because just like all the rest Everything Trump Touches Dies, including Twitter and Muck’s helping him live up to that saying.”

    Its a pity Trump doesn’t start touching himself then.. honestly surprised he hasn’t died yet from one cause or another..

  41. birgerjohansson says

    Wzrd @ 40
    Holy sh@&☆₩t! How are they getting away with downright fraud?

  42. wzrd1 says

    @birgerjohansson, no clue, but reported them to the bank and also filed a complaint with the store’s corporate office.
    The bank’s fraud people are pretty on the ball and good at clawing back stolen funds.

  43. David Richardson says

    There’s an interview with Haraldur (Halli) on Molly Jong-Fast’s Fast Politics podcast. He’s a really nice bloke who’s chosen to move back to Iceland so that he can contribute to Iceland’s welfare with his taxes. He’s busy opening a restaurant in Reykjavik inspired by his relationship with his mother (who died tragically when he was only 11). He wants to make it into the kind of safe, welcoming and enveloping place that reminds you of a close relationship with a parent …

  44. wzrd1 says

    I doubt al Jazeera would have the resources or interest in buying Twitter, doubt France 24 would be interested at all.
    Although, a Mastodon instance would be an effort of worth for either.

  45. tuatara says

    An arsehole-shaped charge will not result in a controlled demolition. It will only produce a shit shower.

  46. brightmoon says

    I truly don’t care I’ve never had a Twitter acct and don’t want one . The way that Amazon mistreated it’s employees horrified me as my grandson was (over) working there at one time! So the fact that Twitter is abusing its staff is 🤮

  47. silvrhalide says

    @41 Nobody cares if public employees collapse from heatstroke or anything else.
    My own agency is having trouble getting people to come back to work, in no small part because most of us have been breathing black mold for years. During the Covid shutdown, the buildings were demolished/renovated with OSHA looking over their shoulders but nobody trusts upper management to do the job right. I’m still in the process of getting a complete exemption from having to work in the building at all, ever.

    As far as your EBT card goes, can you file a formal complaint to the feds and have Giant blacklisted?
    My two cents: call your Congresscritter. You won’t actually talk to the Congresscritter but they all maintain offices and all have staff to deal with this kind of thing. Nothing spurs corrective action like a phone call from a Congressional office, asking awkward questions.It’s ridiculous that you have to wait until next month to get groceries and essentials. Corporations that have contracts with the federal government have to provide services and comply with federal contracts, including appeals processes and corrective processes.