Facebook, Instagram parent company Meta to cut thousands of jobs

Home Technology Facebook, Instagram parent company Meta to cut thousands of jobs
Facebook, Instagram parent company Meta to cut thousands of jobs

Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, is expected to begin “large-scale” lay-offs this week that will affect thousands of employees.

New York-based Wall Street Journal exclusively reported the plan on Monday, citing unnamed people familiar with the matter.

It follows job cuts at Twitter in the past week which hit about half of that social networking giant’s staff.

Less than a fortnight ago, Meta reported that its profit more than halved to $US4.4 billion ($A6.9 billion) in the third quarter from $9.2 billion a year earlier.

The company’s shares tumbled 25 per cent in its worst one-day drop since February.

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Upon announcing the results, Meta said it planned to make “significant changes” to bolster efficiency in a tough economic environment.

The number of employees at the social networking giant tallied 87,314 in September, a 28 per cent increase from a year earlier.

“We are making significant changes across the board to operate more efficiently,” Meta said in its release.

Meta declined to comment on the report of the lay-offs, referring WSJ to chief executive Mark Zuckerberg’s recent statement that the company would “focus our investments on a small number of high priority growth areas.”

“So that means some teams will grow meaningfully, but most other teams will stay flat or shrink over the next year,” he said on the company’s third-quarter earnings call on October 26. “In aggregate, we expect to end 2023 as either roughly the same size, or even a slightly smaller organisation than we are today.”

Analysis from Bloomberg found that Mr Zuckerberg endured “the single biggest hit” out of the world’s billionaires in the past 13 months.

In June, Mr Zuckerberg said Meta would be implementing higher standards for its employees and cutting ties with those who were unable to meet the new performance threshold.

“Realistically, there are probably a bunch of people at the company who shouldn’t be here,” he said in a company-wide Q&A meeting on June 30.

Elon Musk’s brutal lay-offs at Twitter

Following Elon Musk’s official takeover of Twitter less than a fortnight ago, about half the staff got the axe last week.

Twitter employees received a first email on Thursday – some seven days after the takeover was officialised – informing them that they would know their fate the next day.

On Friday, the second email confirmed the rumours: 50 per cent of the staff lost their jobs.

“Executives were getting fired or were resigning, but there was basically no official communication until 5pm Thursday,” said one former employee speaking on condition of anonymity.

The cull hit the marketing department hard, took two-thirds of the design department, and maybe 75 per cent of managers.

Content moderation was somewhat spared, with a lay-off rate of only 15 per cent, according to Yoel Roth, head of safety at the platform.

The way the lay-offs were carried out were brutal.

“People would find out not by any phone call or any email … but just by seeing their work laptop automatically reboot and just to go blank,” Emmanuel Cornet, a French engineer who had been at Twitter for a year and a half, told AFP.

Mr Musk tweeted that “unfortunately there is no choice when the company is losing over $4M/day” and that all those who lost their jobs were “offered three months of severance”.

– with AFP

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