January 25, 2022

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Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey: Hits & misses

Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey stepped down as CEO from the social media platform on Monday, saying in an email announcing the move to employees that he was “really sad…yet really happy” about the decision.

News of his departure as chief – for a second time – sparked plenty of buzz and became the top trending subject on Twitter. Reactions were mixed, with many users sending Dorsey well-wishes and others declaring good riddance, speaking to the controversies surrounding the tech entrepreneur over the years.

MIAMI, FLORIDA – JUNE 04: Jack Dorsey creator, co-founder, and Chairman of Twitter and co-founder & CEO of Square on stage at the Bitcoin 2021 Convention (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images) (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images / Getty Images)

As Dorsey moves on to his next chapter, here are some of the highs and lows from his career thus far:

Fired as Twitter CEO in 2008

Dorsey co-founded Twitter in 2006 with Evan Williams, Biz Stone and Noah Glass, and was initially put at the helm. But he was ousted from the top spot just two years later, after the site had problems with frequent outages while Dorsey was allegedly in the habit of ducking out of work early to attend yoga sessions and fashion classes.

Founds Square in 2009

The next year, Dorsey co-founded Square along with Jim McKelvey, and he became CEO of the payment service. He remains chief executive at Square, and most of his fortune was made from that company. 

According to Forbes, roughly 88% of Dorsey’s purported $11.8 billion net worth is tied up in Square.

Reinstated as Twitter CEO in 2015

Dorsey returned to serving as Twitter’s CEO in 2015, while continuing on as CEO of Square. During his second stint leading the network, the company experienced several controversies that concerned investors and brought heavy scrutiny from the public.

Survives ouster attempt

In early 2020, Dorsey nearly lost his Twitter CEO gig a second time after major shareholders sought his ouster claiming he was not keeping up with his responsibilities due to him simultaneously serving as chief executive at Square. Dorsey was ultimately able to make a deal to remain in his position.

Blocks controversial story about Hunter Biden ahead of election

Hunter Biden, Joe Biden

World Food Program USA Board Chairman Hunter Biden (L) and U.S. Vice President Joe Biden attend the World Food Program USA’s Annual McGovern-Dole Leadership Award Ceremony at Organization of American States on April 12, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo (Photo by Teresa Kroeger/Getty Images for World Food Program USA)

DORSEY WOULD BE DEVELOPING BITCOIN IF HE DIDN’T WORK FOR TWITTER, SQUARE

Twitter enraged Republicans and free press advocates when it refused to allow the posting of a New York Post article on its site that revealed the contents of a laptop owned by then-Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, ahead of the 2020 election against Republican nominee and then-President Donald Trump.

The social media site also locked the New York Post out of its account for several days, leaving the outlet unable to post any of its stories. Twitter was accused of carrying water for the elder Biden over the decision, which Dorsey later admitted could have been handled better.

Banning Trump

Trump

Former U.S. President Donald Trump asked a federal judge in Florida to ask Twitter to restore his account, which the company removed in January citing a risk of incitement of violence. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images) (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Twitter also drew condemnation from Republicans when it issued a lifetime ban of President Trump from the platform following the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters after a rally for the president. 

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The company cited the risk of “further incitement” for its decision to ban Trump, who became known for his frequent messages on the platform.

Trump was also banned from Facebook and Instagram, but the bans by the Meta-owned firms are not permanent. The former president is now launching his own social media site.