Top Irish Twitter executive settles action against social media giant

Sinead McSweeney challenged company’s contention that she had resigned by not replying to a generic email after she was subsequently locked out

Senior Irish-based Twitter executive Sinead McSweeney has settled her High Court action against the company.

Last month, Ms McSweeney, who is Twitter’s global vice-president for public policy, secured a temporary High Court injunction preventing the social networking giant from terminating her contract of employment.

The matter had been adjourned to allow the parties to discuss the issues between them.

On Tuesday, Mr Justice Brian O’Moore was told the action had been settled and the parties were consenting to an order striking out the full proceedings.


All orders previously granted by the court were discharged. No details of any settlement agreement, which is understood to be confidential, were given in open court.

Ms McSweeney had claimed in her action that by not responding to a generic and vague email, she was treated as if she was no longer employed by the company. She said the email was sent to all Twitter employees by its owner Elon Musk in November asking them to tick the “yes” box if they wanted to be part of “Twitter 2.0″.

She said she never resigned from her job but was locked out of Twitter’s IT system and was unable to access the firm’s Dublin office.

In reply, Twitter, represented by Mark Connaughton SC, said the company was offering undertakings to restore Ms McSweeney’s access to all aspects of the company’s IT system and Twitter’s Irish premises at George’s Quay in Dublin 2.

Twitter also told the High Court it wanted to enter into negotiations with Ms McSweeney aimed at resolving the dispute.

Mr Justice O’Moore previously encouraged the sides to be forthright in any discussions they had about her employment.

Represented by Frank Beatty SC, instructed by solicitor Adrian Twomey, Ms McSweeney had claimed that she was informed she had accepted an exit package from the company following her decision not to respond to Mr Musk’s email to the company’s employees in mid-November.

The court heard solicitors’ letters were sent to Twitter on her behalf. She claimed Twitter’s lawyers replied by acknowledging she had not resigned, confirming her commitment to her work “had never been questioned”, and that her access to the IT systems and office would be restored.

Despite that communication from the company, she remained locked out of both the IT systems and Twitter’s Dublin office, leaving her embarrassed, humiliated and upset.

Despite Twitter’s response, she remained concerned about her job because of the “mixed messages” she was getting from Mr Musk and his senior US-based associates since the company had been taken over.

As a result of her concerns, Ms McSweeney commenced a legal action against the company resulting in her securing a temporary court order preventing Twitter International Unlimited Company from terminating her contract of employment.

The injunction also restrained Twitter from applying the terms of the email sent to her on November 16th last by Elon Musk to her contract or condition of employment.

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan is High Court Reporter with The Irish Times