Twitter is under investigation by San Francisco city officials following an allegation that the company allegedly turned rooms at its headquarters into dormitories, an investigation that has drawn scorn from Elon Musk.
As of Monday, the office has “modest bedrooms with unmade mattresses, drab curtains and giant telepresence monitors in the conference room” with four to eight beds per floor, employees told Forbes. The changes appear to be part of Musk’s plan for a “hardcore Twitter” requiring workers to put in “long hours at high intensity” after he laid off nearly half of the company’s workforce.
But the San Francisco Chronicle reported that the company has not applied for any permits to use parts of the building for residential purposes.
The San Francisco building inspection department confirmed to various media outlets that it is investigating the matter after receiving a complaint and that it plans to inspect the company’s headquarters.
“We need to make sure that the building is used as intended,” a spokesman for the department, Patrick Hannan, told the Washington Post. “There are different building code requirements for residential buildings, including those used for short-term stays. These codes ensure that people use the spaces safely.”
The department has contacted building representatives to conduct an inspection and, if the venue is no longer in compliance with the building code, it will issue a notice of violation. The city treats all property and landlord complaints the same, Hannan said.
“No one is above the law,” Hannan said.
Musk criticized the investigation. “So the city of SF attacks companies that provide beds for tired employees instead of making sure children are safe from fentanyl. where are your priorities @LondonBreed!?” he said on Twitter with a link to an article detailing a father’s account that his baby girl overdosed on fentanyl after being exposed to the drug at a city playground.
So the city of SF attacks companies that provide beds for tired employees instead of making sure kids are safe from fentanyl. where are your priorities @LondonBreed!?https://t.co/M7QJWP7u0N
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 6, 2022
No city or police official has confirmed whether the boy’s emergency was the result of fentanyl exposure.
Some workers have already reported having slept at the company headquarters. Twitter’s director of product management, Esther Crawford, shared a photo of her last month of her sleeping in the office wearing an eye mask and sleeping bag. “When her team is pushing 24 hours a day to meet deadlines, sometimes #sleepwhereyouwork”Crawford wrote on Twitter.
Employees told Forbes that no announcement was made about the new beds, but they believed they were there so workers could spend the night in the office.
“It doesn’t look good,” they said. “It’s another unspoken sign of disrespect. There is no discussion. Just like the beds appeared.”