Since becoming CEO of Twitter, Elon Musk has not been short of controversial headlines. In a latest spark of outrage, Musk has been slammed for discriminating against a disabled worker.
Elon Musk has been raising eyebrows with his decision-making since buying out the popular social media site. The last few days have been no exception, with the SpaceX Founder being accused of discriminating against a disabled worker.
A Series of Unfortunate Events
From monetizing verification ticks to firing vast numbers of staff on the spot, it seemingly has not been an easy ride for Musk or Twitter’s employees. Musk also re-instated previously banned accounts, including Donald Trump and Andrew Tate, amongst other individuals who were banned for spreading harmful rhetoric and being discriminatory towards others.
Despite all the drama, Musk has been continuously sharing comedic memes and taking what appears to be a light-hearted approach to his role as CEO.
The Latest Controversy
Musk has caused outrage in the latest events by mocking a disabled worker. Haraldur Thorleifsson ‘Halli’ was the employee in question, who found himself locked out of his work computer. Halli contacted Twitter’s new CEO several times to no avail and found himself locked out of his laptop for nine days.
As almost 10% of Twitter’s workforce was laid off by Musk, a fair assumption for being locked out of the computer is that Halli, too, has been let go by the company. However, he received no such communication, so he was left wondering whether his place on Twitter was secure.
Eventually, Halli decided to take more drastic measures and publicly tweeted Musk about the matter, hoping to get a response finally.
Dear @elonmusk ?
9 days ago the access to my work computer was cut, along with about 200 other Twitter employees.
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?— Halli (@iamharaldur) March 6, 2023
Playing into some recent issues around Musk’s leadership, Thorleifsson alluded to his poor communication and the recent mass firing of employees. Thorleifsson points out that he still has not even been told whether he’s a current employee at the company or not. To close off, he digs at how Musk seemingly prioritizes his popularity on social media over efficiently running Twitter.
On The Defense
The reality is that this guy (who is independently wealthy) 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.
Can’t say I have a lot of respect for that.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 7, 2023
Musk responded with claims that Halli had not been doing his job correctly. He states: “The reality is that this guy (who is independently wealthy) did no work, claimed as his excuse that he had a disability that prevented him from typing, yet was simultaneously tweeting up a storm. Can’t say I have a lot of respect for that.”
The bold assertion immediately sparked outrage. Halli was formally fired from Twitter just shortly after Musk’s response tweet. Musk’s claim that Halli is not disabled was unfounded, evident in his later response.
In another tweet later that day, Musk apologized for his ‘misunderstanding of the situation.’ He also clarifies that Halli’s dismissal was not being enforced and that he may even consider staying at the company. However, Musk’s earlier and more defensive tweets remain live.
I would like to apologize to Halli for my misunderstanding of his situation. It was based on things I was told that were untrue or, in some cases, true, but not meaningful.
He is considering remaining at Twitter.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 7, 2023
Contrary to Musk’s suggestion that Halli might stay at Twitter, his most recent tweet reveals that he hopes to open a restaurant in Iceland, where he is currently based.
In other news, I’m opening a restaurant in downtown Reykjavik very soon.
It’s named after my mom. Like many mom’s she was the best mom in the world.
Kind, funny, hard working and a wonderful artist. And cool, oh boy was she cool.
See you soon at @AnnaJona pic.twitter.com/YfmcXo3s9k— Halli (@iamharaldur) March 7, 2023