Speed Reads

Jeopardizing Job Cuts

Elon Musk cuts size of Twitter's child exploitation team, days after calling it his top priority

Twitter CEO Elon Musk has significantly reduced the size of the team dedicated to fighting child sexual exploitation on the social media platform, Bloomberg reported Tuesday. 

Amid continuing job cuts by the company, at least half of the employees working against child exploitation have been let go, sources told Bloomberg. The team's skeleton crew now reportedly consists of less than 10 people, down from 20 at the beginning of the year. 

The team, which Bloomberg said consists of "a mix of former law enforcement officers and child safety experts based in the U.S., Ireland, and Singapore," was already being pushed to its limits prior to this latest round of cuts. Even with less than 10 people on the team, they are still responsible for an all-encompassing range of tasks to stop child sexual exploitation on Twitter. This includes stopping the spread of child sexual abuse material, identifying online groomers, and tracking down media that promoted sex trafficking. 

Musk's decision to slash the team in half comes just days after he reiterated that stopping child sexual exploitation was his top mission. 

"Removing child exploitation is priority #1," Musk tweeted. "Please reply in comments if you see anything that Twitter needs to address."

While Twitter has taken steps to remove hashtags and posts associated with child exploitation, this was reportedly in motion prior to Musk purchasing the company.

Additionally, The Daily Dot noted that removing hashtags will likely not do much to solve the problem, as predators can simply continue their conversations using a different hashtag.