Facebook employees react to the company's massive stock-drop: 'I feel like s--t'
- Some Facebook employees are not happy about the company's massive 20% drop in stock price.
- They're taking to anonymous social network Blind to moan about how "bad" they feel, and to point the finger at those they think are responsible.
- In messages seen by Business Insider, employees said they "feel like shit" and blamed over-hiring for Facebook's woes.
Facebook's stock price has plunged 20% – and some employees aren't happy about it.
As with most Silicon Valley tech companies, Facebook employee's compensation is heavily based on equity in the company. So Facebook's weaker-than-expected Q2 earnings report and the subsequent sell-off has not gone unnoticed inside the company.
On Thursday, the day after Facebook's earnings report, some employees took to Blind, an anonymous social network for tech industry workers, to vent.
Reactions ranged from darkly gloomy — "feeling shit" — to optimistically shrugging off any worries and predicting brighter days ahead. Some also pointed the finger at overhiring and poor execution by the company's leadership for the recent woes.
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'My feeling is so bad'
Blind requires users to sign up with company email addresses to verify that they work for the company they claim, but beyond that the users remain anonymous. Users can create and reply to threads in various public forums, as well as exclusive employee-only forums for particular companies.
On Thursday morning, a Google employee remarked in one of the public forums: "I wonder how the mood in the office will be today."
A Facebook employee replied glumly with a frowning emoticon and the assessment "my feeling is so bad :( "
Another Facebook employee was cruder in their assessment — though they showed some signs of optimism. "Feeling shit, but it will probably go back up like did recover from 150 in 3 months."
In one of the app's private forums restricted to employees of major tech companies, the Facebook stock plunge was a big topic of discussion.
One of these employees put on a brave face: "Sucks since it's a big dip, but it'll be OK." They added they wished Facebook had a program to automatically sell their shares as soon as they vest.
Another cautioned employees of other tech companies against taking pleasure in their misfortune. "Remember, all of us are in this together," they wrote. "Our pay is determined by market. If competition lowers pay, it will impact you too. May be not by much if it's FB alone, but given the top of the market is defined by 4/5 companies, one of them suffering a set back will have an impact on other's benefits too, IMHO."
"I feel like shit. Hope it helps," another employee added bluntly.
Some employees are playing the blame game
It's worth noting that even with the 20% plunge in Facebook's share price, the stock is still trading at the level it was a few months ago. Even so, some Facebook employees on Blind began pointing the finger at who and what they believe to be responsible fo the bad news.
One employee criticised the company's hiring practices as part of the issue. "Problem: We are hiring at an ungodly pace. With operating margin under 40% it only makes sense to slow down hiring, plus the quality of a lot of the new hires is bleh," they wrote.
"Quantity doesn't equal quality and the talent pool is tapped out. Earnings are tanking because we are hiring people we don't even need. This is the problem and I don't know why others aren't really talking about it. It's frustrating.
They added: "Solution: 1.) Slow down hiring completely. 2.) Stop hiring people we do not need."
"Overhiring is definitely [an] issue," another replied.
Another in the private tech company group republished a comment they had made in a Facebook-employee-only Blind forum, in which they knocked their employer for missing the boat on voice-activated speakers.
"FB struggles to grow user base in US, but there are 7M people just in USA with visual disability. But we couldn't make a simple voice-powered interface to make the platform (and corresponding Ads) to bring this people to connect to the world," they wrote.
"But, it's Amazon — who was never known as a talent powerhouse — [that] introduced the world to Alexa. Google and Apple followed them, and we are years behind. Our genius leaders clearly failed to see the values, as they were busy looking the world in VR glasses and to be fake-excited."
Facebook declined to comment for this story.
It's not just Facebook employees who have been hit by the fallout. In another thread, an Oracle employee implied that they held Facebook stock and were reliant on it rebounding to buy property: "My friends at Facebook. Please work hard to get the stock back up. I need the down payment for a second house. Please."
A Facebooker replied "HODL!!" — a slang term from the cryptocurrency world that urges people not to sell off their assets in times of falling prices.
An Amazon employee, who said they previously worked at Facebook, claimed to have lost $86,000 as a result of the drop-off. A Facebook employee said they effectively lost $120,000 in unvested RSUs.
And in one of the public threads, a Facebook employee was stoic about the whole thing, suggesting it was bound to happen sooner or later.
"This was inevitable though don't ya think?" they asked rhetorically. "Why is it surprising that there would be a growth decline? There are only so many people in the world."
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