Elon Musk responded to a Twitter employee who was unsure whether he had been laid off in a recent round of cuts by publicly mocking his disability.

Haraldur Thorleifsson tweeted Musk to say his access to his work computer had been disabled nine days ago and that he didn’t hear back from human resources.

He tweeted at Musk: “However your head of HR is not able to confirm if I am an employee or not. 

“You’ve not answered my emails. Maybe if enough people retweet you’ll answer me here?”

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Musk responded by asking: “What work have you been doing?”

In the threads on Monday and Tuesday, Thorleifsson wanted to know if he was still an employee at the firm. 

He joined Twitter when the social media company bought his design firm, Ueno, in 2021.

Thorleifsson said he was leading the prioritization of design projects across the organization.

Musk later tweeted that the design manager “did no actual work, claimed as his excuse that he had a disability that prevented him from typing, yet was simultaneously tweeting up a storm.”

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Thorleifsson replied that he has muscular dystrophy, a disorder that causes muscle weakness and, as a result, is unable to type for long periods.

“This wasn’t a problem in Twitter 1.0 since I was a senior director, and my job was mostly to help teams move forward, give them strategic and tactical guidance.

“I’m typing this on my phone btw. It’s easier for because I only need to use one finger.”

“Let me know if you are going to pay what you owe me? I think you can afford it?” 

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Musk has provoked outrage at Twitter and Tesla over working conditions and the aggressive manner in which he has been known to interact with staff online.

He tweeted on Tuesday, saying it “hurts my faith in humanity” that people were defending Thorleifsson online.

Musk, the world’s second-wealthiest man, is also a power user of the site he purchased for $44 billion in October. 

With followers of over 130 million, he uses the site to make major company announcements and sometimes gets in conflict with regulators and advertisers.

Since taking over Twitter, Musk has laid off thousands of people, sacked most of its leadership, and given more attention to Twitter that Tesla shares have fallen.

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The social media giant has become a chaotic workplace with little communication from the company during the spate of job cuts, notes several current and former employees.

Musk seems to have altered his tune about his former employee by Tuesday evening.

He tweeted that he was having a video conference with Thorleifsson to “figure out what’s real vs what I was told.”

In a tweet, Musk apologized to Thorleifsson for “my misunderstanding of his situation” and said Thorleifsson was considering staying at the firm.

Source: The Washington Post

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