Scandal and Betrayal: The Story of how Twitter started

Twitter is an American microblogging and social networking service, in this users interact through tweets. Twitter was founded on March 21, 2006. Its founders are Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams. Despite being famous it is also known for its controversial history. The history of Twitter begins in San Francisco. Co-founder of Odeo, Noah Glass had a product whereby calling on a phone number, it would change the message into an MP3. One of the earliest investors in Noah’s Odeo was Evan Williams.

Williams was a former Google employee and a good friend of Noah. He showed a keen interest in Odeo. Thereafter, Odeo shifted from Noah’s apartment to Williams’. They eventually started hiring more employees, Jack Dorsey was one of them.
By July 2005, Odeo had a platform for podcasting but soon after, Odeo’s employees began to realize that it was going to flop. It happened because, in July 2005, Apple first announced iTunes that was going to include a podcast platform, that would eventually sell.

How did Twitter come into existence?

Williams as CEO decided to drop the idea of podcasting and he told the employees to come up with some unique ideas. Jack Dorsey had a completely different idea that revolved around “status”. He shared this idea with Noah, they exchanged thoughts and worked on Dorsey’s idea.


Along with Jack and Florian Weber, a German contract developer, Noah in February 2006 presented this idea to the company. The idea was of a system whereby sending a text to a number it would be broadcasted to all your friends. It was named TWTTR aka Twitter, by Noah Glass. After the presentation, Williams put Noah In charge of that project. Along with his team, Noah worked really hard on the project. Most of the former employees couldn’t deny Noah’s hard work and obsession towards that project. At a board meeting for Odeo Noah presented Twitter to Odeo’s directors, undoubtedly it was satisfactory.

The definition of Twitter was a short burst of inconsequential information and chirp from birds and that exactly explains the product.

One day on September 2006, Odeo’s CEO Evan Williams wrote a letter to its investors, where he mentioned the company was at loss and he would like them to buy back their shares for the same. And eventually, the investors agreed. Evan bought the company including Twitter. He changed its name from Odeo to Obvious Corp. The next thing he did was very shocking, he fired Noah Glass, Jack became the CEO.

Five years later, assets of the company were worth 5 billion dollars from 5 million dollars. Did Evan Williams see this coming? The question remains unanswered but many former employees of Odeo call him a calculative man.


Why did Evan Williams fired Noah Glass?

Probably because of their different personalities and clash in opinions. Other former employees suggest that it was because he showed too much inclination in running Twitter. Earlier before Evan or Biz, Noah wanted to split the product off as its own company and he wanted to be CEO.

Glass says this whole thing left him disheartened and betrayed. He also agreed to the fact that Twitter wasn’t his soul idea but, it would haven’t been possible without him.

There are different stories behind Williams’ decision for firing Noah, but no one can deny the fact that Twitter is a result of teamwork. It’s because of the contribution of each employee that made Twitter such an amazing platform today. But did all the employees including Glass got their due credits? Odeo’s former employees Wonder what would have been the future of Twitter today, without Noah’s contribution.



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