The World Cup in Qatar will likely be the final straw that breaks Twitter’s back, according to a bombshell report.
With the world just hours away from the World Cup opening ceremony, an insider has come forward to reveal the $66 billion social media goliath has a “50-50” chance of falling apart during the tournament.
Rogue billionaire owner Elon Musk has already aggressively sacked thousands of employees worldwide which so far is about half of Twitter’s workforce.
Things are getting desperate at the social media firm. The New York Times has reported a further 1200 staff are set to walk out.
They are about to get much worse, an insider has told The Guardian with the World Cup driving a dramatic rise in traffic.
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The former employee has come forward to tell the world there is a very real chance Twitter will be offline at some stage during the 29-day tournament.
The former employee also estimates there is a 90 per cent likelihood of Twitter users experiencing failures and noticing glitches.
The source said: “It’s likely to struggle with traffic at kick-off, and may crash.
“If we’re lucky, it will recover with minimal disruption.”
It is another World Cup headache Australia did not need after the 2018 World Cup in Russia was tainted by Optus’ broadcasting flops that resulted in hundreds of thousands being unable to watch matches.
It is also another major headache for the under-fire tournament that is emerging as the most controversial World Cup ever held.
There have been widespread protests, including by the Socceroos, against the Gulf nation’s human rights abuses. The stadiums used for the tournament were built at a cost of 6500 workers’ lives.
It has also emerged Qatar has banned the sale of alcoholic drinks around the eight World Cup stadiums — in a dramatic backflip that has been described as “a deliberate f*** you to the west”.
Twitter’s perilous position could be exactly what the tournament is looking for — something else for the world to turn its fury towards.
Following Musk’s takeover, up to half the workforce were made redundant, senior executives were sent packing, staff have been reportedly sacked for criticising the new CEO and controversial new features were quickly introduced to users and just as quickly dropped.
The list of redundant employees reportedly includes critical coding staff that would have helped manage the spike in traffic during the World Cup.
All the changes have left the World Cup largely unprotected, according to the insider, who says they are not aware of any contingency plans being put in place to deal with traffic “hot spots”.
“Traffic gets very spiky during big events, so any big play or controversial call will drive a very sudden surge of traffic – and the infrastructure would have to absorb the impact,” said the former employee.
“Under other circumstances there would be plenty of people watching things and making sure any hotspots get dealt with.”
Musk admitted in a Twitter post users outside of the United States were already experiencing lagging issues.
There are fears it is just days before the rest of the world is plunged into the same chaos.
Robert Graham, a veteran cybersecurity entrepreneur, has told the ABC it appears Musk is going to “blow up Twitter”.
“I can’t see how the lights won’t go out at any moment.”
Social media industry analyst Matt Navarra posted on Twitter the latest information suggests the World Cup spike will result in a “catastrophic failure”.
Sports business expert Mark J. Burns also posted: “Twitter recorded 115 BILLION impressions about the World Cup in 2018. This year’s World Cup might be what actually breaks Twitter amid the company’s current issues”.
Meanwhile, amid the chaos, advertisers are fleeing and US regulators are circling.
Musk this week sent a new and cryptic email to his shrinking Twitter workforce.
Sent on Friday and directed at “anyone who actually writes software,” the bizarre demand to line up and present their work to him comes as things are getting desperate at the social media firm.
But Musk remains as bullish as ever with the new owner commenting on Friday that he is considering reinstating former US President Donald Trump’s Twitter account.
“New Twitter policy is freedom of speech, but not freedom of reach,” he said on Friday.
Last week, Musk sent the remaining staff an email saying “Twitter 2.0” was going to be “extremely hardcore,” and if they didn’t want to “work long hours at high intensity,” they should indicate they wanted to leave.