CBS News is shutting down its Twitter activity following Elon Musk’s turbulent and potentially devastating moves following his takeover of the company.
“Given the uncertainty surrounding Twitter and out of an abundance of caution, CBS News is suspending activity on the social media site as it continues to monitor the platform,” CBS News National Correspondent Jonathan Vigliotti said in a statement. report on the latest chaos at the company on the “CBS Evening News” on Friday.
A statement with nearly identical wording was shared on Friday by the Twitter account of KPIX, the CBS-owned station in San Francisco.
Currently, the most recent post on @CBSNews is a retweet from a segment shared at 3:38 p.m. ET about Attorney General Merrick Garland’s appointment of a special counsel to oversee the Donald Trump investigations. On @CBSEveningNews, the most recent tweet is the story of a dog who “surrendered to the police after getting lost on a walk,” which was released at 5 p.m. ET; @CBSMornings last published at 3:30 p.m. ETreferring to an article about users speculating on “whether Twitter will live or die”.
CBS News’ decision to pull out of Twitter comes just over three weeks after Musk took over ownership of the company – during which time Twitter’s employee base has shrunk to around 33% of its previous size. At least 1,200 Twitter employees reportedly quit on Thursday, refusing to accept Musk’s request to work “long hours at high intensity”. This has raised concerns about Twitter’s ability to keep the service running reliably and securely with an estimated staff of around 2,500 (up from 7,500 before Musk’s $44 billion acquisition).
Another looming question: whether Musk will allow Trump to return to Twitter. The ex-president in early 2021 was kicked off Twitter for his role in the January case. 6 attack on the US Capitol aimed at overthrowing the 2020 US presidential election.
On Friday, Musk launched a poll asking his more than 116 million followers if Twitter should reinstate Trump. After nearly 6 million votes, 55.4% were in favor of removing Trump.
Musk also said Twitter is reinstating comedian Kathy Griffin’s account (after she was suspended for impersonating Musk) as well as those of right-wing figure Jordan Peterson and satire site Babylon Bee (which had both been banned by Twitter for violating his “hateful conduct” on anti-transgender posts).
After the mass resignations on Twitter, Musk – the richest individual in the world – called an emergency meeting of engineers on Friday, asking that “anyone who actually writes software” report to the company’s headquarters in San Francisco. The mega-billionaire also asked engineers to send him “what your code commands have achieved over the past ~6 months, along with up to 10 screenshots of the most salient lines of code.”