Think for the employees of the social platform who may be asked to do the impossible.
Elon Musk is resurrecting his original takeover bid for Twitter Inc., maybe because he didn’t want to go through legal handling reveals more embarrassing text messages. We don’t know exactly why Musk made the company’s most spectacular comeback this year, which Bloomberg News first reported on Tuesday, but crucially Musk and Twitter threw into each other is set to be swept along the carpet as the paperwork is signed. Twitter has confirmed that they have received his letter and that it intends to close the transaction. In other words, the deal can actually happen.
Those leaves we think about how one The world’s most influential social networks will emerge under Musk’s leadership. Civil liberties groups have joined hands over how the site’s censorship will change, fearing a flood of hate speech and misinformation due to strange and messy views. Musk’s on freedom of speech. (He wants to Everyone to speak more freely on the site, but not when it involves criticizing him, basically.)
How that unfolds is an open question. What is more obvious is that in the event of a deal, Twitter will receive a large amount culture shock. A company known for its internal indecision, where product decisions are made at icy speeds because managers are obsessed with reaching consensus, will suddenly shift. to an autocratic, fast-paced structure. Musk will push Twitter to pursue seemingly impossible goals, under ridiculous deadlines. Staff Who mocked the idea that working for Musk in internal Slack channels would soon be reeling from what appeared to be crazy requests.
For example, Musk has said that he wants to authenticate all the real people on the site. That means he most likely asked his engineers to shrink the total spambots from around 5% to less than 1%. While other CEOs might give them a few years to do the job, he’s more likely to ask them to do it within the next six to 12 months.
Musk has a history of asking for the impossible at his companies, while creating a reality-distorting field for the rest of us about what they’re going to achieve. In 2019, he told investors that in 2020 Tesla will put a million driverless taxis on the road, able to drive themselves anywhere in the world under any conditions. That never happened. That same year, he said his Neuralink chips would enter the human brain in 2020. So far, they have only been implanted in monkeys.
He’s not all fools. Musk revived America space programmed by putting the rocket into orbit and landing again The earth. He pioneered the global revolution in electric cars and allowed Ukrainians to access the internet using his Starlink satellite internet program.
But Musk has a history of over-promotion. “Self-driving” Teslas made dangerous mistakes, and thousands of its owners paid $15,000 for “full self-driving capabilities” that actually required them to keep operating the vehicle.
Somehow, Musk keeps hanging carrots in front of our eyes, telling us what sci-fi stuff is just around the corner. He did it again on Friday, announcing a humanoid robot at a Tesla event last week about artificial intelligence.
“Last year, it was just a person in a robot suit,” he said. It’s true. Within 12 months and from scratch, his engineers built a robot that could walk across the stage with slightly bent knees, wires wrapped around actuators behind the limbs, and metal joints.
Robots are nothing short of revolutionary, but Musk’s engineers have done a remarkable job in racing to develop the technology in such a short amount of time.
As he stood on stage at Tesla’s presentation on Friday, he seemed more predictive. Tesla will sell millions of robots, for less than a car, he said. “I would say less, perhaps under $20,000,” he declared. (The cheapest human-sized robot costs nearly $150,000.)
Twitter employees will no doubt face similar pressures, and they’ll have to find creative ways to make Musk’s public statements meaningful. For instance, during Friday’s robotics presentation, an engineer boasted that the Optimus robot could simply use Tesla’s autopilot technology to navigate around offices. The company did not mention that Tesla’s driving system was trained on video of roads, not inside buildings or factories. That made their demo of a robot gently placing a package on an office worker’s desk like a complete fantasy.
Expect Musk to expand his tactics to Twitter, promising quick, sweeping rule changes while asking product managers to figure out how to make them work.
One big unknown is how his bold demands will play out in the realm of policy and free speech, an area more unpredictable and unpredictable than engineering.
He’ll also find it a lot harder to motivate Twitter employees to pursue his lofty goals; His controversial back and forth with the company means he is starting his leadership with a huge trust deficit. He will need to earn the respect of his employees if he wants them to fulfill his requests, which could be his biggest ambition ever.
Parmy Olson is a Bloomberg Technology covered columnist comments. A former reporter for the Wall Street Journal and Forbes, she is the author of “We Are Anonymous.”