Mass exodus of workers Thursday evening made it clear for many that Twitter was on the edge of disappearing, inspiring many to say goodbye as well as taking over ten of the top eleven trending topics.
After weeks of firings and resignations, Twitter was already running on essentially a skeleton crew.
The feeling that Twitter was nearing the end was heightened by Musk’s deadline for workers to commit to his “extremely hardcore” work demands of long hours and weekends in office.
Anecdotal reports surfaced of a mass exodus of workers.
Kylie Robison (@kyliebytes), a tech reporter for Fortune Magazine tweeted about the informal anecdotal perception that it seemed that 75% of employees were choosing to resign and walk away with a three month severance check.
“One point of clarification on the tweet about 75% of twitter employees leaving— this is chatter I’m hearing about the perceptions among people at twitter. It is not based on any official company data.
I will follow up on this thread with the official data once its known!”
“Story to be updated soon with more: Am hearing that several “critical” infra engineering teams at Twitter have completely resigned. “You cannot run Twitter without this team,” one current engineer tells me of one such group. Also, Twitter has shut off badge access to its offices.”
Heath also shared in another tweet that many employees who resigned share the belief that Twitter is on the edge of “breaking.”
“Hearing from multiple employees that the odds of Twitter breaking in the near future are very high.”
Perception that Twitter is Ending Grows
The feeling that Twitter was on the verge of ending was palpable on Thursday evening and into the early morning hours as many ex-Twitter employees and tweeps tweeted their goodbyes to Twitter.
“Could tonight actually be the end of Twitter? A lot of gleeful people sure seem to hope so.
If you’re going over to Mastadon please look me up – @email@example.com”
Many from all around the world came to Twitter to say goodbye.
everyone is coming to say their last goodbyes
— Aner 🪐 (@anershab) November 18, 2022
“As someone who lived through the heyday of geocities, MySpace, blogspot, typepad, tumblr, and now twitter… it’ll be fine.”
Some Tweets Expressed Humor
Some tweets expressed a gentle or bittersweet humor.
For example, one tweep noted that his only regret was that the beloved Star Wars actor, Mark Hamill, never followed him on Twitter.
Mark Hamill responded with a follow.
— Mark Hamill (@MarkHamill) November 18, 2022
Popular security researcher Jane Manchun Wong, reflecting a humorous “end of the world” vibe of the evening asked if any of her followers had a crush on her.
in case twitter is gone for good, reply if you have a crush on me
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) November 18, 2022
Search trends tracker, Google Trends, revealed that many people are searching for a Twitter alternative. Google searches for both Tumblr and Mastodon have shot up over the past days.
Apparently so many people were using Tumblr that the service temporarily crashed.
Tumblr tweeted a humorous response to their temporary predicament:
hold up like 12 new ppl joined.
we're working on it. give it a sec 🙂 https://t.co/Upd5HEaIBq
— tumblr dot com the website and app (@tumblr) November 18, 2022
Tweets About Twitter Trending Overnight
The trending tweets reflected concern over how long Twitter is going to be available, perhaps as many folks read about the mass exodus of employees.
Ten out of the top eleven trending topics were about Twitter:
Trending with #TwitterDown
Trending with Twitter HQ
Trending with MySpace, Vine
6· Since Twitter
7· Before Twitter
9· Space Karen
The trending topic of Space Karen is a reference to a projection on the side of the Twitter headquarters yesterday evening that scrolled a series of amusing monikers for Elon Musk, with Space Karen inspring a great deal of mirth among Twitter users.
— Muskrat McRatfu*ker needs to resign as CEO (@christoq) November 18, 2022
Space Karen will always be funny 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/CSw5ox3Whg
— Ciara Lashay (@CiCi_Lashay2) November 18, 2022
Is this the End of Twitter?
Considering that Twitter’s infrastructure teams are reported to be running at bare bones level or less, it’s not surprising that so many people feel that Twitter has reached the end.
A test of Twitter’s resilience will come this weekend with the start of the most popular sporting event in the world, The World Cup, which will bring a huge amount of activity to the platform.
The scary part is that employees are said to be locked out of the building this weekend.
I don't think Twitter will last through the weekend. Twitter is restricting employee access to all its buildings through the weekend with no reason given. The entire android team resigned. The world cup,the largest sporting event in the world, starts this weekend.
— Alejandra Caraballo (@Esqueer_) November 18, 2022
The feeling that a historic event is happening in slow motion was inescapable. The trending topics were dominated by tweets related to the demise of Twitter.
That so many people decided to say goodbye added to the perception that Twitter was dying or at least near breaking.
Although the trending topics imply that Twitter is on the way out, a better idea of how much longer Twitter may survive may be known by Monday and during the coming week as the World Cup causes increased traffic to Twitter.
Featured image by Shutterstock/ivan_kislitsin