Musk’s cull sees local cuts, while media agency say they are pulling back from ‘unsafe environment’

The new owner of Twitter, Elon Musk has continued his global cull of the social media company’s staff locally, as Australian advertisers pull back from Twitter.

Locally, staff in Twitter Australia’s communications, marketing, government relations and news content teams have all been laid off, barring a few exceptions.

Agencies are recommending pulling back from Twitter

The Sydney Morning Herald reported the agency sales team has been the least affected, as the platform continues to seek revenue through advertising.

However, Australian advertisers are putting media spend on hold locally, due to the increasingly precarious environment emerging for brands.

One media agency executive told Mumbrella the agency was “effectively” recommending brands pause spend on the platform, while clients were also requesting the same from the agency.

They said at the moment it is “not a safe place for brands”, and that it would be “too damaging” to be thrown into that environment right now.

“We can’t in good conscience tell a client to put themselves in this environment, however good the reach is”, noting a significant rise in derogatory and racist language.

Another agency executive said “I would be recommending clients hold off”, noting they have heard of several holding companies recommending pulling all activity.

This comes in stark contrast to Musk telling advertisers just over a week ago that the platform would become “the most respected advertising platform in the world”.

Musk tweeted over the weekend that there would be a ‘thermonuclear name & shame’ of advertisers that pull funding due to boycotts of the platform.

It was reported by Bloomberg this morning that Twitter management in the United States has been asking some staff to return to the company after being laid off  “by mistake”, and others that may be needed in order to implement the changes being brought forward by Musk.

In another tweet over the weekend, Musk indicated that creator monetisation across all forms of content would soon be available, with more detail in two weeks, and that the platform can “beat” the 55% of ad revenue given to creators which YouTube offers.

Last month, numbers revealed that Twitter’s ad portal dropped around 11% year-over-year (YoY) in September, despite traffic to the site rising during the same period.


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