For the last month and change, things have been a mess on Twitter. The once-thriving social media service has, during the Elon Musk Era, been a mess of bigoted slurs and misinformation, suddenly un-banned freaks, and weird mishegoss involving its blue checkmarks. There’s been drama offline, too. The former richest person in the world has been on a firing spree, including canning employees meant to keep the joint safe. His latest creative move: get way behind on paying rent, because why not.
As per The New York Times, Musk has been desperate to cut costs for the service e purchased for way, way too much. One of his solution has been to stop paying rent on various Twitter HQs, including those in San Francisco as well as its global offices, over the last few weeks. That’s not all: He’s also refused to pay a whopping $197,725 bill for private charter flights he made in the week before Musk forked over a fortune for a service he might not have actually wanted.
If stiffing landlords and airflight companies wasn’t enough, he’s also reportedly toying with doing the same to laid-off employees. Sources tell NYT that he’s been discussing denying the two-month severance packages he granted all the former employees who left in the early days of his tenure. The free speech absolutist who initially claimed to be an open book has already threatened any current employees with lawsuits if they leak anything to the press.
What is Musk’s end game for this or any of the other bizarre moves he’s made during his chaotic stint lording over Twitter? It’s unclear, but most of it is deeply troubling, from withholding payments to cozying up to far right extremists, including seeming to embrace QAnon. And he hasn’t even retaliated yet after getting booed by thousands at a Dave Chappelle show. It’s reminiscent of the daily headaches that unfolded during the Trump administration, except now it’s happening in a place where most people just like to make White Lotus memes.
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