Elon Musk Seemingly Fires Twitter Employee Via Tweet


A Twitter employee who publicly questioned Elon Musk on Sunday night has apparently been fired through a tweet. 

“He’s fired,” Musk wrote(Opens in a new window) about Eric Frohnhoefer, a software engineer for Twitter’s Android app. 

Frohnhoefer decided to speak out after Musk apologized(Opens in a new window) for the slow performance of the company’s mobile app. Musk then blamed the problem on the software’s “poorly batched” remote procedure calls (RPC), which can allow one program to use the services of another program over a remote machine. 

“App is doing >1000 poorly batched RPCs just to render a home timeline!” Musk claimed. 

Frohnhoefer disagreed and wrote his own public tweet(Opens in a new window) that said: “I have spent ~6yrs working on Twitter for Android and can say this is wrong.” His tweet has since attracted over 60,000 likes. 

In response, Musk wrote(Opens in a new window), “Then please correct me. What is the right number?” while adding, “Twitter is super slow on Android. What have you done to fix that?”

Frohnhoefer then argued the problem had nothing to do with an excessive number of remote procedure calls in the app. Instead, he pinned the problem on inefficient software coding.

“First [the app is] bloated with features that get little usage. Second, we have accumulated years of tech debt as we have traded velocity and features over perf. Third, we spend a lot of time waiting for network responses,” he wrote(Opens in a new window). As a result, he’s advocated for Twitter to “aggressively” delete unnecessary features and rewrite the software code “to combat 10+ years” of technical debt in software coding. 

Frohnhoefer later added(Opens in a new window): “Android has a wider range of devices with different performance characteristics. It is what makes Android great but also frustrating.”

Frohnhoefer then questioned why Musk was making his complaints about the Android app public after another user suggested he take his complaints to Musk privately. “Maybe [Musk] should ask questions privately. Maybe using Slack or email,” Frohnhoefer wrote(Opens in a new window).

Musk later tweeted back to Frohnhoefer by implying that he was a poor software programmer. “The fact that you don’t realize that there are up to 1200 ‘microservices’ being called when someone uses the Twitter app is not great,” Musk wrote(Opens in a new window). 

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A separate Twitter user then told Musk “with this kind of attitude, you probably don’t want this guy on your team.” Musk apparently agreed, and wrote in tweet, “He’s fired.”

In response, Frohnhoefer posted(Opens in a new window) the salute emoji. In a previous tweet, he also noted(Opens in a new window), “My LinkedIn account has never been more popular,” an indicator that Frohnhoefer might have no problem finding a new job. 

The apparent firing underscores Musk’s troubles to retain Twitter staff. On Thursday, several executives resigned, a week after Musk initiated mass layoffs. Musk has also warned remaining employees the company could face bankruptcy unless it finds new ways to generate revenue.

Frohnhoefer didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. In the meantime, Musk has tweeted(Opens in a new window): “Part of today will be turning off the ‘microservices’ bloatware. Less than 20% are actually needed for Twitter to work!”

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This article originally appeared on https://www.pcmag.com/news/elon-musk-seemingly-fires-twitter-employee-via-tweet

Brian Jones

Author and owner of WantedDroid.com - scouring the internet for all the news related to Android. Contact me here: https://wanteddroid.com/contact/

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