Technology

Twitter reportedly closes Sacramento data center as part of cost-cutting initiative

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Twitter Inc. has closed its data center in Sacramento as part of an effort to reduce operating expenses, the New York Times reported on Thursday.

Twitter staffers disconnected the data center last week, days before the company experienced a widespread outage that lasted several hours. More than 10,000 users in the U.S. were affected. According to the Times, three people familiar with Twitter’s systems believe that the Sacramento data center could have helped mitigate the outage by providing backup infrastructure.

The facility was one of Twitter’s three main data centers before it stopped operating. The two remaining facilities are located in Atlanta and Portland. Last week, Platformer reported that Twitter plans to downsize the Atlanta data center in a bid to reduce costs. 

In early November, Reuters cited sources as saying that Elon Musk is seeking to lower Twitter’s infrastructure expenses by $1 billion annually. The company reportedly intends to reduce its use of both on-premises servers and cloud resources. It’s believed that the initiative could see Twitter scale back spending on Google Cloud Platform, which hosts some of the company’s internal applications. 

According to Reuters, Twitter also considered cutting infrastructure used to manage sudden increases in traffic. A source familiar with the matter told the news agency that the proposed move may increase the risk of outages. The source was cited as saying that Twitter could fail “in spectacular ways” if the move were to be implemented. 

Since acquiring Twitter, Musk has also sought to lower costs in other ways besides reducing infrastructure use. 

Reports emerged late Thursday that Twitter plans to close its Seattle office and has asked employees to work from home. In New York, Twitter reportedly let go its cleaning staff and 10 members of the corporate security team. The Times cited sources as saying that the move suggests Twitter may seek to close one of its two offices in the city.

As part of the cost-cutting initiative, the company has also made workforce reductions at its San Francisco headquarters. Twitter reportedly canceled cleaning services at its headquarters earlier this month after janitorial staff went on strike for better wages. Additionally, the company moved employees to two floors in the building after closing four others.

Musk recently stated that Twitter has a little over 2,000 employees, down from about 7,500 employees prior to the acquisition. The layoffs carried out by the company since the deal’s completion have drawn regulatory scrutiny in the European Union. Last month, regulators in Ireland and France reportedly asked Twitter to clarify whether it still has sufficient staff to comply with local privacy and content moderation rules. 

Photo: Unsplash

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