After a controversial ban on political discussions earlier this week, Basecamp employees are heading for the exits. The company employs around 60 people, and around a third of the company appears to have accepted buyouts for sale, many citing new company policies.
On Monday, Jason Fried, CEO of Basecamp, announced in a blog post that employees are no longer allowed to openly share their “social and political discussions” at work. “Any discussion from a distance related to Politics, the legal profession, or society in general are quickly turning away from pleasant, ”Fried wrote. “You shouldn’t have to wonder if if you stay away from it is complicity, or if you get involved, you are a target.”
The departures from Basecamp are substantial. According to Twitter Posts, Basecamps design directors, marketing directors, and account managers will all be leaving. The company’s iOS team also appears to have fired en masse, and many departing employees have been with the company for years.
“Due to the recent changes at Basecamp, today is my last day at the company,” read a post from Sam Stephenson’s account. “I joined as a junior programmer over 15 years ago and have been involved in almost every product launch since 2006.”
Requests for comments sent to Downey, Didorosi and Stephenson’s accounts were not answered immediately on Friday.
Journalist Casey Newton said in a tweet on Friday afternoon that “around a third of Basecamp employees accepted buy-outs today after a controversial all-hands meeting” and that “more are coming”.
David Heinemeier Hansson, co-founder of Basecamp, had announced that the company would offer severance packages to employees who were not on board with the new policy changes, according to The Verge. A large portion of Basecamp’s 57 employees ultimately accepted these acquisitions, The Verge added.
The heated political and social environment in the United States in recent years has created problems for more than one technology company. In 2020, Coinbase is said to have sparked an outcry from Silicon Valley executives, such as: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey announced not to debate politics at work. And in the same year Facebook fired an employee after publicly tweeting another worker about his political inaction.