Twitter closes offices, staff resign while users eye decentralized options
Twitter has closed its offices until Monday, Nov. 21 as hundreds of staff walk out in response to Elon Musk’s emailed ultimatum.

Twitter employees are not the only ones ditching the platform as users flock to a decentralized alternative.

Elon Musk has been shaking the Twitter tree since he took over the micro-blogging platform in late October. His latest move has resulted in an exodus of employees and office closures.

Earlier this week, Musk issued an emailed ultimatum to Twitter staff saying that they need to commit to “working long hours at high intensity,” or clear their desks by Thursday, Nov. 17.

A large number of them have taken the second option which is understood to include three months’ severance pay, resulting in the company temporarily closing its offices as hundreds of employees have walked out, according to reports.

Twitter also announced it was temporarily suspending all badge access until Monday, Nov. 21, asking staff to “refrain from discussing confidential company information on social media, with the press or elsewhere.”

According to a poll on the workplace app Blind of 180 people, 42% chose the answer "Taking exit option, I'm free!" reported Reuters on Nov. 18. In a separate poll, half the respondents estimated that 50% of the staff would leave.

Employees are not the only ones fleeing Twitter in Musk's wake, as users have been seeking out alternatives. One that has come to light recently is Mastodon which has seen new registrations surge.

The decentralized social network is a federation of independently operated interconnected servers running on open-source software.

On Nov. 12, Mastodon claimed it had added over a million new members since the Twitter deal closed. On Nov. 3 MIT reported that Twitter had lost the same number of users since Musk’s acquisition.

Former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey also unveiled in October his decentralized social media network, Bluesky Social, which aims to give users control over their data and will feature portable user accounts and access to “an open market of algorithms.”

Dorsey hopes his Bitcoin-powered platform will draw users away from centralized and scam and spam-filled Web2 social media.

Dorsey has already refused to accept the position of CEO at Twitter as Musk said this week that he wants someone else to run it.

Meanwhile, Elon Musk lamented the trials and tribulations of running a social media network after news of the employee exodus broke.

In a separate tweet responding to questions by pop culture blog Barstool Sports founder, Dave Portnoy, Musk said he was “not super worried” as “the best people are staying.”

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US Sen. Warren and Durbin demand answers from Bankman-Fried and his successor at FTX
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Richard Durbin have written to the past and current heads of bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX to demand information about the company’s financial dealings.

United States Senators Elizabeth Warren and Richard Durbin wrote to the former and current CEOs of FTX — Sam Bankman-Fried and John Jay Ray III, respectively — on Nov. 16 to ask for more information on the collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange. They made 13 requests for documents, lists and answers.

“The public is owed a complete and transparent accounting of the business practices and financial activities leading up to and following FTX’s collapse,” the lawmakers wrote. They provided a summary of the major press coverage of the unfolding events and reconstructed a timeline from the media sources. Noting “the apparent lack of due diligence by venture capital and other big investment funds eager to get rich off crypto” among the issues they identified, they wrote:

“These developments justify our long-standing concerns that the crypto industry ‘is built to favor scammers’ and ‘designed to reward insiders and to defraud mom-and-pop investors.’”

Warren and Durbin demand a mass of material tbe provided by Nov. 28. They want “complete copies of all FTX and FTX-subsidiary balance sheets, from 2019 to the present.”

In addition, they ask for explanations of business decisions made by Bankman-Fried and statements he made on Twitter. They probe relations between FTX and Alameda Research and ask for a variety of financial accounts.

Warren and Durbin have teamed up before on crypto policy, writing to the head of Fidelity Investments to object to the inclusion of Bitcoin in one of its investment funds, for example. Warren is a vocal crypto critic who has expressed concern for crypto mining’s energy usage, the dangers of decentralized finance and crypto’s use in ransomware attacks, among other things.

Commenters have noted the irony that Bankman-Fried’s father, Stanford University law professor Joseph Bankman, assisted Warren in drafting tax legislation.

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Bahamian securities regulator ordered the transfer of FTX’s digital assets
Two days after freezing FTX Digital Market’s assets on Nov. 10, the Bahamian securities regulator acted on a court order to seize FDM’s assets.

The Securities Commission of the Bahamas (SCB) said it had ordered the transfer of all digital assets of FTX Digital Markets (FDM) to a digital wallet owned by the commission on Nov. 12.

In a Nov. 17 statement, the SCB said it exercised its power as a regulator acting under the authority of a Supreme Court order — moving the assets to a “digital wallet controlled by the Commission, for safekeeping.”

SCB justified last week’s move by stating that “urgent interim regulatory action was necessary to protect the interests of clients and creditors of FDM.”

The latest revelation could shed some light on certain movements of funds detected last week.

On Nov. 11, the crypto community flagged a number of suspicious transactions in wallets tied to FTX and FTX.US, with analysts reporting around $663 million drained. $477 million were suspected to be stolen, while the remainder was believed to have been moved to secure storage by FTX themselves.

The SCB statement however did not make any mention of how much of FDM’s digital assets were moved as a result of their order.

Cointelegraph has reached out to SCB for clarity but has not received a response by the time of publication.

The commission’s order would have been made only two days after the commission froze FDM’s assets on Nov. 10, suspended FTX’s registration in the country and stripped the FTX directors of their power.

At the time, it also stated that FDM’s assets could only be moved by obtaining the approval of a provisional liquidator appointed by the Supreme Court.

The FTX bankruptcy drama has continued to unfold over the last week.

On Nov. 15, FDM filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy protection in a New York-based court in order to seek U.S. recognition of the Bahamian liquidation proceedings.

Brian Simms, the court-appointed provisional liquidator overseeing the bankruptcy proceedings of FTX Digital Markets in the Bahamas, argued in the filing that FDM wasn’t authorized to file for Chapter 11 in the United States and rejected the validity of the filing.

On Nov. 17, an emergency motion by FTX Trading Limited argued that both the Chapter 11 case and all proceedings related to Chapter 15 filings should take place in the Delaware-based U.S. Bankruptcy Court in order to “end the chaos and to ensure that assets can be secured and marshalled in an orderly process.”

The same filing also claimed they have “credible evidence that the Bahamian government is responsible for directing unauthorized access to the Debtors’ systems for the purpose of obtaining digital assets of the Debtors—that took place after the commencement of these cases.”

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This Daily Dose was brought to you by Cointelegraph.

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