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The Twitter layoffs were handled terribly, says Big Tech's Alex Kantrowitzwell you know I really don

CNBC Television

Updated on Jan 31,2023

The Twitter layoffs were handled terribly, says Big Tech's Alex Kantrowitz

well you know I really don't think we've,ever seen a 24 hours like this in,Silicon Valley you have thousands of,people who are just watching themselves,being disconnected from the Twitter,slack and then narrating their,experiences on Twitter for all of us to,see so there's a lot of sadness coming,out of that company and I think there's,a lot of confusion and uncertainty about,what it's going to mean for the the,future of this company,Alex what do you make of the way all of,this has gone down you know from the,layoffs to the other issue which we're,going to get into in a moment with the,advertisers but you've got I've seen New,York State lawmakers tweeting about the,way that these employees were allegedly,let go,the layoffs were handled terribly I,don't think there's much debate about,that this is going to be a case study in,business schools for years about the way,not to do it no communication for,management from the moment they took,over uh and frankly you know layoffs,that,um hit core teams that Elon Musk is,going to need so it's bad for the,business as well some of those layoffs,came in sales and advertising you know,so it's no wonder that advertisers who,have a little clarity about what the the,content policies are going to be for,this new leadership inside Twitter it's,no wonder that they are now trying to,hold back their ad spend but this,Remains What what clearly seems to be,the largest issue moving forward,certainly from a business standpoint,let's take a look at this tweet from,Elon Musk this afternoon regarding the,advertisers in which he says quote,Twitter has had a massive drop in,Revenue due to activist groups,pressuring advertisers and though,nothing has changed with content,moderation and we did everything we,could to appease the activists extremely,messed up they're trying to destroy free,speech in America Casey I'd like your,reaction to that verse and what the,broader ramifications are for the vision,and ideas that musk and Company had for,that side of the business,well look I I sort of laugh at the idea,that Elon has tried everything he could,to appease advertisers when just a few,days ago he was tweeting homophobic,conspiracy theories right so I think,it's only natural that during a,transition like this advertisers are,going to want to pause and see what the,new lay of the land is because brand,safety is very important to them now for,Elon this is a real problem because,Twitter makes 89 of its Revenue through,advertising and so if he doesn't get,this handle if he doesn't get a handle,on this in a hurry uh you know that this,is going to become even a worse deal for,him than it already is,is it going to be a heavier lift Alex do,you think that than than he thought for,even somebody,um like musk who's obviously proven that,he can run multiple businesses uh,successfully at once,absolutely it's definitely going to be a,heavier lift than he thought and you,hear people around him talking about how,it's going to be easy to turn this,company around and I think that's the,first warning side when people say,trying to fix Twitter is easy and it all,feels easy to us as users that sort of,gives you an indication that they,haven't thought through the problems as,well as they should have and I think,that goes for musk I think that goes for,the people that he's listening to and I,think I was feeling a little bit more,optimistic at the beginning of the week,but now seeing the Reckless nature of,this layoff the fact that how can you,know who to cut he's been there for six,days and you make your list like it,doesn't make sense the traditional,Playbook here is you spend two months,learning the business then you make your,decision you do it in a day and this has,just been so messy it's going to make,the hill much harder for Elon Musk to,climb going forward,Casey I'll give you the last word on,what was the biggest issue this idea of,charging verified users eight dollars a,month before this sort of adstorm uh,blew up in in musk's face and and we're,talking about that as the principal,issue because it's the key business,issue but what about this idea of the,what seems to be a fair amount of,pushback on the idea of eight bucks,yeah look I think it makes sense for,Twitter to shift more of its Revenue mix,to subscriptions over time I think,there's a lot of low-hanging fruit there,I think charging for users for features,including at least some forms of,verification probably makes sense but,when you look at how much they can make,off of eight bucks a month with the,relatively low penetration they're going,to get at that price and you compare,that to the size of their current,advertising business there's no,comparison that's a drop in the bucket,so elon's gonna need a lot of bigger,ideas if he wants to make his money back,on this company,guys as always I appreciate it and,enjoyed it that's Alex and Casey joining,us once again on all things Twitter

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Big Technology's Alex Kantrowitz and Platformer's Casey Newton react to Musk's Twitter buy

Big Technology's Alex Kantrowitz and Platformer's Casey Newton react to Musk's Twitter buy

i did not and i'll say it maya culpa i,underestimated elon musk you know my,doubt came from the fact that he didn't,have the financing lined up that was,clear in the initial filings and he put,in what was a record for an individual,in terms of making an acquisition offer,you know tens of billions of dollars,betting the health of tesla on this it's,an extraordinary move for an out of the,ordinary individual and i take it back,elon pulled it off and and it's pretty,unbelievable to actually say today that,we're sitting here with him having a,deal for twitter and police,yep uh casey your reaction i mean the,whole thing really did change when he he,showed his hand,and he happened to have a flush,that's right i mean in a lot of ways,this was a fairly normal process uh he,made an offer the board didn't believe,him they wanted him to show that he had,the funding he did it they kicked the,tires and decided it was the best deal,so as an extraordinary of a day as this,is in a lot of ways it does look kind of,ordinary,the best deal or the only deal casey,that's really what it comes down to,doesn't it,yeah and look i think if twitter thought,it could get a better deal,it would have held out for longer and in,fact you know the fact that they reached,this decision as quickly as they did and,announced it before they had to report,earnings suggests to me that they were,looking at a really bleak road ahead for,these next six months so i have a,feeling things may have been worse,inside twitter than we know,you know alex it's an interesting point,that casey makes and eric jackson the,investor who's going to join us a little,bit later in our program tweeted the,following i want your reaction to it as,well snap facebook and pinterest down an,average of 19 since march 28th would,have put twitter at 31 today absent an,elon offer that's what the board will,argue their earnings for q1 must be,horrible do you have that same,conclusion,yeah i mean look it sometimes in this,sector it happens that everybody falls,and the individual company earnings,doesn't matter,but with twitter they are heading into,some of the same headwinds like they're,an advertising business and we've talked,on the program before about how apple,has been twisting the screws on tracking,in that matter so it could be difficult,for them yeah but ultimately elon made,it impossible for the board to walk away,at this point if he pulled his,investment what would twitter have left,you'd have an unsettled employee base,you'd have a stock cratering and of,course looped in with all these other,companies that are having issues,so you know,it became a point where the board,couldn't say no once the funding was,there and elon brought the funding and,here we are,why is there no white knight i mean what,what it when you look at twitter and you,kick the tires,you open the the hood and you look in,there what do you see,i mean this company's weight was you,know,i made a lot of money for this company,you know it's bringing in 5 billion a,year you know to pay 46 billion,somewhere in that range is a massive,multiple especially if he's talking,about you know changing the ad product,ultimately you know to own twitter you,need to be able to deal with the,headaches right but musk is willing to,most companies are not disney was not,salesforce was not and he paid a lot of,money for it so it's a pretty unique,situation nobody else was going to come,in and play that game but elon was,willing to,so casey what does he do though right,alex alludes to the advertising model in,which twitter has what does musk do,what does it look like under him,this is the many billion dollar question,the ad model has not been working out,well for twitter it doesn't seem like,elon is all that,fond of ads what does that leave you,with though you have a subscription,business which would make twitter much,smaller i think potentially certainly if,you had to have a paid subscription to,participate there's also this,interesting idea of could you sell,access to the api could you sort of,grant that fire hose access to,businesses who are willing to pay a lot,of money for the privilege build a,variety of different experiences around,twitter,if i have a better idea than advertising,i think it's that one but i don't know,how elon feels about it and of course on,stage at ted the other day he said he,had no economic interest in twitter at,all so it really is an open question of,what he is about to do with this company

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There's no way Elon Musk buys Twitter: Big Technology's Kantrowitz

There's no way Elon Musk buys Twitter: Big Technology's Kantrowitz

alex kantrowitz and casey newton and,guys it's it's great to have you both,here alex i'll start with you i mean,even musk said he doesn't know if this,is going to happen the market seems to,have placed its bet what do you think,i don't think there's any way that this,happens i mean you definitely you,mentioned the market twitter stock is,down today it doesn't look like they,believe that there's anything to us,doesn't uh have the funding in place yet,i mean he could fail tesla's council,chairs but um you know it's a highly,unlikely thing for him to do he said,himself they said that it's not a,money-making thing to him it's an,ideology thing to him so i think the,most likely outcome here is that the,board rejects his offer and that he,sells his shares and that paves a very,difficult road for twitter in the months,ahead,casey is this as easy and no as alex,paints,well every time i make a prediction,about what's about to happen with,twitter and elon musk i get it,completely wrong so i'm inclined to,think that alex is right you know,normally when you see somebody mount a,hostel take over like this they line up,the funding first elon musk has made it,very clear that this plan does not have,a lot of details but stranger things,have happened and i have learned to,expect the unexpected when it comes to,this twitter user and twitter,so let me ask you this um because i just,exchanged uh some texts with dick,costello okay he's the former twitter,ceo as you know i asked him what he,thinks is gonna happen and he says quote,uh he thinks that musk loses patience,with the formal process you can take,that for what you what you will and what,that means to where this all goes but,casey what do you think about that that,sounds all fine and good on the surface,but this is going to be a longer road,than maybe musk expects and at least in,costillo's mind he just loses patience,with the formality of it,yeah it's kind of a good question how,long is elon musk's attention span and,if it were really long would he really,be running three companies at the same,time maybe trying to run a fourth uh so,i do think that there's an argument that,he loses patience but in particular i,think he would lose patience with just,the uh various irritations of having to,run a company like that right he's going,to have a huge section of the user base,who are uh you know angry at him every,single day um and there are a lot of sec,issues i think to worry about in the,run-up to this so there's a lot for him,that could potentially be very obnoxious,to deal with,i mean alex the implication of course,from from costello is that he's not,going to stick around right he's just,going to lose patience with the,formality of the whole thing and then,he's going to end up bouncing he's you,know look his tweets would suggest,otherwise at least right now 3 30 this,afternoon he tweets it would be utterly,indefensible not to put this offer to a,shareholder vote they own the company,not the board of directors what do you,think about that because i mean look the,board can make a determination clearly,that the offer doesn't meet the value,that they think the company has,yeah i have to disagree with dick on,this one i mean there's this myth that,elon has a short attention span,and won't see things through i mean look,at it look what he's done with tesla and,spacex when this guy gets something in,his head he goes for it and he does it i,think the main question is not going to,be whether he wants to,you know can pay attention to it longer,but whether he ultimately looks at the,amount of work that gets put into,running a company like twitter and,decides that you know it's worth the,sacrifice from tesla from spacex which,are again two parts of his you know,ideas to make the world better make us a,multi-planetary species you know make us,you know uh uh bring us to electric,vehicles but i'll say i watched him at,ted today and he gave some really well,thought out answers about what he wants,to do with twitter better than i was,expecting so i think you know what casey,mentioned earlier i expect the,unexpected with elon is spot on um but,again i i just think that it's a funding,issue for him uh and you know i think,that it's a bluff really to try to,punish twitter for um you know not not,uh taking his input seriously at the,beginning so so you don't think that,he'll,he'll raise his offer and let me bring,you,excuse me another tweet,uh by way of mark cuban who,doesn't take this whole thing serious to,begin with he says,my conclusion,elon musk is blanking with the sec,his filing with the sec allows him to,say he wants to take a company private,for 5420 then he has a laugh emoji,versus am considering taking tesla,private at 420 funding secured price go,up his shares get sold profit sec like,wtf just happened what do you make of,that,yeah i think i think cuban's right um,look i think that elon has the will to,do this if he if he would want to go,through he has a wherewithal to do it um,but

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Is Elon's Twitter Already Dead?

Is Elon's Twitter Already Dead?

Venture capitalists like you're there's,something going on there go ahead well,that's exactly right you know like on,some level it was no surprise that he,suspended journalists like clearly you,know the crowd that he runs in has been,dying for a chance to suspend,journalists for whatever made up reasons,for a long time but you know Paul Graham,uh you know just a few weeks ago was,that was tweeting things like um wow you,know it seems like a lot of people out,there think they know how to run a,company better than Elon Musk you know I,mean like he was just sort of firmly in,the camp of uh of folks who think that,you know Elon is a genius and um uh Paul,then dared to tweet out a link to his,Mastodon or rather a link to his,personal page which contained a link to,his Mastodon he didn't even yeah he was,careful not to break elon's rules yeah,he didn't break the rules and um,well look look where we are now you know,Paul's I saw Paul's over on Mastodon now,and um yeah you know even like you know,I'm not even gonna say his name but,there's this sort of like you know uh,intellectual dark web like anti-vaxxer,you know like even he's tweeting like,you know elon's like lost the plot here,because of course they all thought that,he was coming here in the name of free,speech and then he's like oh by the way,you can't post a link to your Instagram,I mean it's like Elon has truly made,fools of them all,yeah he's been more restrictive on,speech than previous Twitter was now of,course it's coming through a different,fashion uh and you could argue that the,previous previous Twitter did restrict,speech in its own way but,the the impulsivity with which Elon is,Banning people is really unbelievable,yeah um and and it's just not it's not,principled you know I I mean it it just,it came from a place of sheer,existential Terror that because of the,previous mistakes that he made running,the platform over the past six weeks,people had just started to flee and he's,like well you know we can't have that so,just a complete embarrassment after a,set of cell phones,yeah and now why do you think that so,death spiral basically triggering,something that is going to cause the,death and you can't really come out of,it so what is that what exactly do you,think's happen well I mean look you know,Twitter was an advertising business,right they made 90 of their revenue from,ads last year then he tanked that ad,business by letting 60 000 of the worst,people to ever Tweet back onto the,platform uh by creating a you know brand,impersonation crisis with The Botch,relaunch of of Twitter blue and so I,have a very hard time believing that,Twitter is going to be having a great,quarter for ads in fact we've actually,heard you know that they're down by just,staggering percentages over the previous,year and um that's you know at a time,when the ad Revenue should be up because,the World Cup is happening and that's,traditionally Twitter's best performing,time,um uh like ever is sort of when the,World Cup is going on so the ads,business is tanking,um then they are trying to relaunch this,blue thing to you know get a,verification badge but the initial,launch was so bad it's relatively,expensive doesn't really come with any,features and then you sort of throw into,the mix the fact that the policies are,just changing every single day in,radical ways and that's just undermining,trust in the platform right why am I,going to pay Elon uh musk 11 bucks if,he's just gonna tell me the next day,like well you know you can't tweet a,link to your Instagram so he's just,destroyed that Foundation of trust um,and then by suspending the journalists,he triggered the sort of moment this,long overdue Reckoning where reporters,are like okay well like clearly Twitter,is not going to be where I'm,Distributing my news for the rest of my,life I got to go build a Lifeboat,somewhere else and I think what he's,going to find,six months from now is that the,journalist who he sewed as Danes were,one of the major forces that were,propping Twitter up because it like they,were the reason that it set the global,news agenda because like all the,reporters were in one chat room now,those reporters are going to be other,places right and when you don't have,them they're breaking news all the time,or news is breaking in other places,you're just gonna sap the platform of,that Vitality which was its only path to,making back that ad revenue or,subscription Revenue so it's just it is,all starting to fall apart,and it's interesting that after so long,uh running the platform being close to,the platform the thing that Jack Dorsey,said along when he was the CEO was,Twitter was a news app yeah and it was,the home for news he built he went all,the way in on news you're right the,people if you lose the people that are,breaking the news on the app it's going,to be a lot more difficult to,um to fulfill that that value,proposition and then you look at the,others you want to get in I mean look at,Andreessen Horowitz rig

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Big Tech's experimental projects won't be funded, says Big Technology Newsletter's Kantrowitz

Big Tech's experimental projects won't be funded, says Big Technology Newsletter's Kantrowitz

Alex love your thesis here I disagree,with parts of it though so which is,going to be fun um so I I think big Tech,you argue that they're vulnerable to,outside challenges refocusing on the,core and while they are doing that they,also seem to to be investing still in,key strategic initiatives it's not like,they're taking ion their eye off the,ball entirely and at the same time,Capital funding is drying up for some,upstarts isn't it so doesn't that give,them an advantage,yeah it doesn't I think in the short,term you might see advantages that could,be a mirage it's going to look really,good for big Tech they're going to be,able to cut down on cost and be more,profitable in the short term and the,companies that might be nipping at their,heels the series C and the series D,startups you know they're going to be uh,drying out of funding and then they're,not going to be able to compete as well,so it's going to look really good but I,do think you can't deny the fact that,these companies are pulling back yes,they're definitely funding strategic,initiatives but those experimental,projects that used to come up and would,get the money because why not they're,not going to be funded anymore and I,think that exposes these companies to,long-term vulnerability so no matter how,how much they're funding their strategic,initiatives down the line there's going,to be some short-term vulnerability no,question about it uh I hear that I also,hear at the same time from some CEOs and,and high level managers almost a sense,of Silver Lining relief here that the,laws of physics not just in the stock,market certainly but in the labor market,are returning right management is,reassured itself saying no we can't do,everything as a matter of fact you can't,hire that extra person where you know a,year or so ago they found it really,difficult to make that argument,well John this is where I disagree with,you because you can cut employees the,question is are you cutting the right,employees it's much easier to say we're,going to do a labor reduction and end up,losing the people who are responsible,for the most Innovative initiatives,inside the company because they'll have,a place to go the people who don't,really see a future they're going to do,whatever they can to hold on to their,jobs and so you could end up cutting the,people who were driving the initiatives,in the company they're actually making a,difference and holding on to those,loafers and I think that's the that's,the problem I think with meta you see a,real issue here right where they're,taking people in projects that were not,really panning out and saying you have,30 days to find a new job or you're gone,well the people working on projects that,might not pan out you know they were the,people who had the chance to build the,next big thing or the people in the,safer projects you know it's a matter of,who you end up losing and I think this,is a thing that can really get lost when,you don't read between the lines here,to that point Alex this was part of the,discussion at that Google all hands that,our CNBC reporter Jennifer Elias got a,hold of they were asked the management,was asked about raises equity and,bonuses would that remain on track and I,thought this was kind of interesting the,response was it won't they won't deviate,from paying workers at the top end of,the market so that leaves a lot open to,your point you know who do they consider,the top end of the market they're most,crucial to their competitive Advantage,um to go back to what John was saying I,also like a debate so what about one,word here the bundle when it comes to,Microsoft are they not in a stronger,position by focusing on packaging their,stuff together putting some of the,incumbents out of business because they,can do so they've already got access to,the Enterprise the biggest Enterprise,players and they can say hey look he's,teams for your video for your messaging,collaboration and a whole host of other,products are going into cyber security,now that's a strong way to play this,right,well Microsoft is no stranger to,doubling down on its strengths and,writing that to profitability for a long,time we know they did that with Windows,I think in the short term again you're,going to see some good things my worry,about is is the long term think about,what just happened to Adobe right but,the Adobe leader they're getting,marketed from doing that,yeah I agree and it can look that way in,the near term but the long term you can,end up having issues again I'm going to,point to the Adobe example you know they,they were the only one in the game and,then out of nowhere right how quickly,did figma come up because they weren't,Reinventing quick enough and now they,had to make this deal it ended up,hurting the stock because it was,defensive and they needed to do it so I,think that with these companies it can,look good in the near term and,understand I understand they can take,market share there's a way to capitalize,on these moments b

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Tech’s Frothy Days Are Over. Now What? — With Eliot Brown

Tech’s Frothy Days Are Over. Now What? — With Eliot Brown

great to have you back so for years,you've talked about this kind of wild,economy that we were living in and I,feel like you've been like the patron,saint of calling it out I obviously said,wework was a bunch of froth,um and you've talked a lot about in our,conversations and on Twitter and in your,stories about specs and crypto and,Investments and nothing like car,companies that electric car companies,that don't make cars,I just want to hear your perspective on,what the reality is like is the reality,that a lot of this froth has gone away,now that interest rates are rising or,are we still seeing a lot of that,persist,yeah uh I think that basically in 2022,and now into 2023 we like we have seen a,a return to reality or sort of nearer,reality like if you you sort of,um you know there's a lot of caveats to,that and I don't think it's broad I,still think there's a lot of sort of,like the world that doesn't quite,realize how much the floor has fallen,beneath them but if you look at the the,stock market and all a lot of these,companies that were startups in the mid,2010s and and,um were disrupting the world and and you,know Industries left and right and all,the Venture firms were piling money on,to them and and Forbes was writing Gauzy,cover stories about them,um they're they're sort of like you know,have gone from really really high,valuations to things that seem like they,make a little more sense so,um you know my my favorite hobby I guess,for work was was talking about wework,and how they were valued like a tech,company when they were supposed to be a,real estate company and and you could,sort of apply that across the Venture,Capital world and,um if you look like scooter companies uh,oat milk companies car dealer companies,those are now valued like scooter oat,milk and car companies not more or less,um not like you know really profitable,software companies,and I want to ask the question,underlying all this which is is this,good I mean there's been you know,obviously investors have been hurt by,some of the wacky valuations out there,but overall for our economy there are,some that argue that the fact that there,was all this money flowing into quote,unquote Innovative spaces meant that we,were getting more Innovation uh which,was which ultimately betters the world,um what do you think well so yeah I mean,that dries up it's not an issue yeah I,think it's a really complicated question,I think that that is like what what good,does a bubble do and and,um and I think it's at this point you,know undeniable to use the word bubble,even though some in BC probably still,would cringe,um but uh like I think,you always do get some sort of,things created in bubbles that you would,not have otherwise that actually are,useful,um so uh you know like in England uh in,in the 1840s or something like that,maybe 1860s they built so many rail,tracks that uh like it was like seven,percent of GDP in the UK was was going,to like rail the railroads uh for for,you or something like that and um you,know the result was they built a lot of,extra rail tracks that go places and and,same with like in 1929 in New York where,um everyone was just thinking a great,idea was to invest in office skyscrapers,that uh hadn't been built yet and so,they built some really cool architecture,that in in the end didn't really have,many tenants at first but is there for,you know 100 years plus now,um I guess 90 years plus now and uh you,know looks really nice on the skyline so,um what is the corollary today uh you,know we've gotten a huge amount of,investment in electric vehicles that we,wouldn't have gotten and we probably got,some some you know drone technology and,maybe even flying taxi technology we'll,see uh that probably wouldn't have come,otherwise and probably a bunch of other,things maybe even like sped up,mRNA vaccine technology artificial,intelligence I would throw in as well,can we say that again AI,um like I mean yeah,open AI got a ton of money out of this,this sort of high key World,um but uh look I mean if like is the the,general idea of being ignorant to,reality is something that's good uh no,um in my humble opinion I mean like you,want to know what the was actually,real in in this world and and not just,type and uh like it's it's it's that's,sort of an important part of living,um in society and you know to add on to,that that you you have a lot of Pension,funds and and retirement funds and,foundations that are are going to get,pretty subpar returns having invested in,this stuff but you can't have perfect,markets right there's never going to be,a situation where only the stuff that's,merited is funded and the stuff that's,not merited is not funded I wonder,what's going to happen with you know,when we think about what's going to,happen after the froth right startups,for instance are going to really,struggle to raise funding or or some of,them will will shut down and we're gonna,actually we're going to go through like,some of more public companies but

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Elon Musk Laid Me Off At Twitter: Simon Balmain

Elon Musk Laid Me Off At Twitter: Simon Balmain

welcome to Big technology podcast a show,for cool headed nuanced conversation of,the tech world and Beyond and we are,going to do this episode emergency Style,just gonna throw it right up on the feed,no music uh because we have some serious,breaking news,um there's been serious layoffs at,Twitter and I thought you might want to,hear from someone who's been inside the,company and can share a little bit about,their perspective about what it's been,like what it means and where Twitter and,the employees go from here,so joining us today is Simon Balmain,he's a former senior community manager,at Twitter one of the many employees,tweeting about his departure it's been,very interesting to watch it play out in,public and his tweet caught my eye and,he's graciously appeared to come and,talk us through uh what's happened Simon,welcome to the show uh you're welcome,thank you for having me so where are you,based so I'm in England uh I'm in I live,in Birmingham which is uh in the middle,of the country,um just a couple of hours north of of,London,um so kind of between uh working from,home here in Birmingham and um yeah,going into the London office,occasionally yeah and now,um can you share a little bit about how,you you seem to be fairly early uh,because in Thurs in on Thursday uh,Twitter had announced that it was going,to do these layoffs and then um you,tweeted pretty soon afterwards so so how,did you find out,so um,we uh we'd obviously been hearing these,can you is my voice clear does it sound,okay yep loud and clear okay cool cool,um,so we'd obviously been hearing about,these issues uh these potential,um rumors of layoffs since,pretty much since the deal was was,completed uh around a week ago the rumor,mill sort of,churned into overdrive uh with this idea,that big layoffs were were on the,horizon,um we got the email uh everyone in the,company as I understand it got this,email,last last night,um,it was pretty it was pretty early hours,of the morning in the UK it was after,midnight,um I tend to be up quite late because I,primarily have been working with people,in the US and working on products in San,Francisco and on the west coast,um so those are kind of my normal hours,um,and within the email kind of said yeah,there's going to be this huge reduction,in head count uh,you if you're affected you'll get an,email to your personal email and if not,you'll get something to your work email,and it was within an hour of that going,out that uh I noticed my laptop flash,um it had been sort of remotely uh,removed from the system and kind of set,to the Mac security pin setting that you,get when you sort of remotely wipe out,or revoke access to systems,um,and after that I checked and it was the,same with uh my Gmail G Suite access,that was revoked my slack access or,revoked as well wait that's how you,found out just yeah that's how I found,out just everything just removed,straight away yeah was there follow-up,communication from the company after,that,yeah there's there's been follow-up,communication,um very,let's just say very carefully worded uh,obviously,different countries,um even different states in the US,different territories you know the the,labor laws can vary widely right and in,the UK we actually have pretty good,labor laws,um so there is there is certain things,that have to be said and certain steps,that have to be taken and processes that,have to be followed otherwise,um you can find yourself in in serious,legal liability,um so certainly at least here in the UK,and I'm sure you know everywhere,everywhere else relative to to whatever,local laws are applicable uh is paying,very close attention to ensure that this,process is followed,um,and you know whatever if if that happens,then that's fine uh if it doesn't then,we'll see where we go from there,right what's the mood been like inside,the company have you imagined I know,that you're in the UK right smaller,office than in in New York San Francisco,but I imagine you're all connected,digitally yes I mean I've primarily been,working with mostly with folks in in the,US,um pretty much my whole time at the,company,um,I guess the the maybe yeah maybe we,start with like when musk had you know,agreed and then we can go through,um you know the various stages so when,you found out that Elon had had was act,actually gonna close this deal was there,a surprise I mean it happened it's hard,to believe but it happened just a week,ago yeah well,it's the whole process even going back,to you know April when he first made,this offer has been just an absolute,roller coaster of ups and downs and so,talk about that roller coaster yeah,unpredictable,um he may you know he made this offer in,in uh in April,um,I suppose based upon,the relative economic Market at the time,pertaining to tech companies uh shortly,after that you know Global events that,took place like you know what's been,happening in Ukraine and uh you know,various other things,um caused the majority of tech stocks to,you know drop quite

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The market isn't interested in Meta's promises of long-term growth, says Big Technology's Kantrowitz

The market isn't interested in Meta's promises of long-term growth, says Big Technology's Kantrowitz

now that sheryl sandberg has announced,her departure from facebook or meta many,are weighing in on what it means for the,company one of my next guests says it,cements mark zuckerberg's a to z role at,the tech giant cnbc contributor and new,york times assistant editor ed lee joins,me now along with big technology founder,alex kantrowitz who is also a cnbc,contributor and i'll start with you,takeaways thoughts impressions,well you know the i think that the main,sort of frame that we're all looking at,this is the adult in the room has now,left the building the truth of it is is,that she's actually,you know kind of left for a while now,right so she's had this role for for,many many years but in the last few,years you know mark has really,consolidated his power and kind of,redistributed it with within other,executives within other people in the,organization guys like nick clegg for,example uh handling public policy so in,a way it's not as surprising as as you,can see the market sort of reacted in a,very muted way to her departure um so at,the same time huge legacy absolutely,crucial to facebook becoming what it is,today targeted advertising was a big,thing that she did at google and that,she essentially invented or or,reinvented at facebook and these two,companies really dominate the online ad,market so massive legacy there uh it's a,mix it's a mixed bag of course cambridge,analytica uh january 6th uh these are,our sort of blemishes on her record um,but again not a huge surprise i think,mark has been in charge for a while is,that a good thing alex i mean that does,this company need fresh vision or is his,vision of the metaverse um cheryl or no,cheryl the right place to take this,company,yeah well i would say in terms of fresh,vision it already has the fresh vision,and that is the metaverse and i've never,heard the word metaverse come out of,sheryl sandberg's mouth so to see her,leaving at this point um is is like ed,says not a surprise and i just think,that this goes to show you how important,it is that facebook nails this metaverse,bet i mean the company's putting all of,its chips and the growth of ar and vr,and,whether it's legacy businesses survive,seem to be beside the point and that's,why we're seeing this really tough,moment for meta in the market right now,stock is down because the market isn't,interested in promises of long-term,growth it wants results now it's just,not the company's focus anymore and once,sandberg who sat in this you know ads,side of the company talking about how,small businesses can use facebook to,reach consumers that's the line she's,given over and over and over again saw,where the company was going it was all,of a sudden like well what am i doing,here anymore so it just underscores how,important it is for facebook to nail,this bet and to that point and you are,also saying her significance was that,she kept facebook from being an even,more um how did you put it off-kilter,company at times it,previously over the years so who's going,to play that role now at a time when,there's more than ever at stake to,alex's point and it's going to be,difficult to get this transition right,that's exactly the right question,because going into the metaverse,creating it it's what he's really doing,is just creating another sort of social,network with,different kinds of bells and whistles or,different sort of interactive sort of,element to it but it will still have the,same pitfalls right it will still have,the same issues and concerns and you,know without moderation without real,oversight and they've attempted it you,know with with facebook blue but they're,actually taking money away from that,sector of the business that is like,human moderation and putting it into the,metaverse and,that's that's the goal that's the aim,and they've been very clear about that,but that is i think,you're not replacing one problem with,the other the with a with a different,one it's the same problem that's going,to just carry over to the metaverse so,that is exactly the right question the,fact is i think,cheryl did lose her power for the last,few years as these scandals mounted so,in a way,you know that role was taken away from,from her in the last few years mark,essentially sort of up took that up,himself but,i haven't really seen at least from his,actions or his his words yet what that,how that will translate into a safer,space essentially,alex parting word of advice for,investors,well i would say if you're interested in,long-term growth then facebook seems,like a potentially good bet if you want,immediate results and that's where the,market is going at this point,i would stay away from it i mean look at,all the challenges the company has,it's dealing with advertisers that can't,get results or can't optimize because of,apple's changes it's dealing with,regulators you know breathing down its,neck with no sign of letting up it's,dealing with competition people like,tick tock even snapchat is on the rise,right now we know the

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