Twitter Co-Founder Jack Dorsey Steps Down As CEO, Takes Subtle Shot At Zuck On The Way Out

Twitter Founder Jack Dorsey
In a startling announcement, Twitter co-founder and now-former chief executive officer Jack Dorsey is leaving the social media service pretty much in wholesale fashion. He has already handed the reins to Parag Agrawal, who today assumed the role of CEO, and will also depart his spot on the board after his current term expires in May of next year.

Upon his departure in May, Salesforce president and chief operating officer Bret Taylor become chairman of the board, replacing Patrick Pichette. Between the two (Agrawal and Taylor), Dorsey feels Twitter is in capable hands to serve the social media space without him being a part it. And him not being a part of it is key.

"There's a lot of talk about the importance of a company being 'founder-led'. Ultimately I believe that's severely limiting and a single point of failure," Dorsey said in a message to posted to...(wait for it)...Twitter. "I've worked hard to ensure this company can break away from its founding and founders."

It's an interesting perspective, and one that is not always seen from people in his position. That's certainly true of, Meta, where it seems as though Mark Zuckerberg will forever be entrenched. And while Agrawal doesn't specifically mention Meta or Zuckerberg in his farewell announcement, he does seemingly take a parting shot of sorts.
"I believe it's critical a company can stand on its own, free of its founder's influence or direction...There aren't many companies that get to this level. And there aren't many founders that choose their company over their own ego," Dorsey says.

Hence why he is also leaving the board when his term ends in 2022. But is there more to it that what was stated in his message? Dorsey also serves as CEO of Square, a digital payments company, which drew criticism last year from investment firms Elliot Management and Silver Lake, the former of which initially tried to oust Dorsey before a deal was reached.

None of that matters now, as Dorsey is leaving on what he claims is his own accord, saying the decision to step down and depart "was my decision and I own it." He also says it was a tough one to make, and that he's both "really sad" and "really happy," which is understandable.

As for Agrawal, joined Twitter back in 2011 as a software engineer, then ascended to the role of chief technology officer in 2017. Before Twitter, he fielded research roles at Microsoft, Yahoo, and AT&T.

This all raises the question, can we finally get an edit button?

Thumbnail/Top Image Source: Ryan Lash / TED (via Flickr)