On Wednesday night, Elon Musk wrote Twitter staff his first email, warning them of an impending “difficult economic climate” and urging them to begin Twitter Blue verified subscriptions to “survive the upcoming economic crisis.”

Musk is in conflict with advertisers who have suspended their ad spend on the service due to his takeover, erratic management style, and his personal tweets after firing half of Twitter’s staff and dismantling entire teams. On Wednesday, Musk introduced a new Twitter Blue subscription that costs $7.99 per month and enables anyone in supported nations to pay for verification.

Musk writes in a memo to workers, “We need about half of our revenue to be subscription,” but the verification drive is off to a shaky start with fraudulent verified accounts posing as companies and celebrities over the previous 24 hours.

Additionally, Musk makes it known to the staff that attendance at the workplace is now required. Everyone must spend a minimum of 40 hours a week in the office, according to Musk.


Here is the full text of Musk’s first email to Twitter staff, which we have obtained:

Sorry that this is my first email to the whole company, but there is no way to sugarcoat the message.

Frankly, the economic picture ahead is dire, especially for a company like ours that is so dependent on advertising in a challenging economic climate. Moreover, 70% of our advertising is brand, rather than specific performance, which makes us doubly vulnerable!

That is why the priority over the past ten days has been to develop and launch Twitter Blue Verified subscriptions (huge props to the team!). Without significant subscription revenue, there is a good chance Twitter will not survive the upcoming economic downturn. We need roughly half of our revenue to be subscription.

Of course, we will still then be significantly reliant on advertising, so I am spending time with our sales & partnerships teams to ensure that Twitter continues to be appealing to advertisers.

The road ahead is arduous and will require intense work to succeed. We are also changing Twitter policy such that remote work is no longer allowed, unless you have a specific exception. Managers will send the exceptions lists to me for review an approval.

Starting tomorrow (Thursday), everyone is required to be in the office for a minimum of 40 hours per week. Obviously, if you are physically unable to travel to an office or have a critical personal obligation, then your absence is understandable.

I look forward to working with you to take Twitter to a whole new level. The potential is truly incredible!

Thanks, Elon