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Twitter employee, whose pic of sleeping in office went viral, laid off: Report


Twitter laid off at least 200 employees over the weekend as per a report by The New York Times (article beyond paywall), and it has now emerged that a product manager, whose picture of sleeping on the floor at the company headquarters went viral earlier, was among the fired staff.

According to tweets by Alex Heath, editor at tech news site The Verge, and Zoë Schiffer, managing editor of tech newsletter Platformer, Esther Crawford and most of the remaining product team were sacked in what is reported to be the eighth round of job cuts since Elon Musk took over Twitter in October 2022.

Crawford, who was the chief executive of Twitter payments and in charge of the paid Blue subscription service, had taken to Twitter last year to defend her viral picture and the ‘hardcore’ work culture of longer hours and stricter deadlines under Musk’s regime.

First shared by Evan Jones, a product manager for Twitter Spaces, the picture showed Crawford fast asleep on the floor in a sleeping bag and eye mask. “When you need something from your boss at elon twitter,” Jones captioned the image. Crawford, while retweeting the photo, explained that sometimes you’ll be required to sleep at your workplace and work round the clock to meet deadlines.

While some users criticised the ‘toxic’ work culture, Crawford went on to glorify her teammates’ sacrifices to build new things at Twitter amid a ‘crazy acquisition’.

“We are #OneTeam and we use the hashtag #LoveWhereYouWork to show it, which is why I retweeted with #SleepWhereYouWork – a cheeky nod to fellow Tweeps. We’ve been in the midst of a crazy public acquisition for months but we keep going & I’m so proud of our strength & resilience,” she continued.

The latest layoffs impacted product managers, data scientists and engineers who worked on machine learning and site reliability, which helps keep Twitter’s various features online, the NYT report said.

The Twitter workforce has reduced by over 70% from an estimated 7,500 employees when Musk assumed the top job to less than 2,000 now, as per The Verge. The fresh job cuts are the fourth one since the Twitter chief promised November last year that there would be no more layoffs.

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