Twitter engineer claims was fired for making tool to help co-workers prepare for job cuts: What he made and more


Emmanuel Cornet, a former Twitter Inc engineer has accused the company of firing him because he developed a tool to help co-workers prepare for the anticipated layoffs. Based in San Francisco, Cornet was fired on November 1, a few days before Twitter began laying off about half of its 7,500 employees in a cost-cutting drive.
Cornet, along with four others, has filed a complaint with the US National Labor Relations Board accusing the social media company of violating federal and California laws requiring employers to give 60 days’ notice before engaging in mass layoffs. He further claims in the lawsuit that he was engaged in protected activity by working on the tool. “Protected activities” are actions that workers can take without fear of employer retaliation under US labor law.

What is the tool that Cornet developed
Cornet had developed a Google Chrome extension to allow employees to download emails from their Twitter accounts. The Chrome extension aimed to ensure that workers could save important documents such as statements reflecting their stock in Twitter, performance reviews, and other human resource documents. “After the layoff rumors, many Twitter employees wanted to save some important documents before potentially losing access. For example: statements from their stock broker (company goes private –> no more stock, which can be a big part of compensation), things from WorkDay (outsourced HR management), etc. This may also include emails important to one’s future career if considered from a self-protection standpoint (good performance reviews, proof of key achievements, etc.). Think about it: if you thought you may lose access to all your work email tomorrow, is there anything in there that you may need?” Cornet wrote in a personal blog.
Cornet posted the software on an internal Twitter Slack messaging channel. He says that he was fired on the same day that he published the extension. “On 1 Nov 2022 I decided to help out other concerned employees by publishing this extension on the Chrome Web store (here it is — and here is a screenshot in case it ever gets taken down). I then posted a link to the extension on an internal Slack channel. On the same day, I was fired and that post was taken down,” adds Cornet in the post. Twitter removed the link later that day, according to the complaint.
Why he says his firing is violation of law
He says that his sharing the Chrome Extension on slack was not a corporate policy. “Not unless it could be proven that the downloaded message file was moved away from the corporate computer. I had been learning from my years at Google (working on Gmail, heh) where an “email retention policy” was implemented to auto-delete emails older than 18 months,” added Cornet.



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