It’s 2 a.m. and Nicki Minaj is curled up on a black leather couch in the green room of Hollywood’s Siren Studios, exhausted from last night’s recording session, which ended at 4 a.m., and today’s 11-hour magazine shoot. The 31-year-old rapper and singer is de-glammed in a black turtleneck crop top, matching leggings, and fluffy duck slippers, her makeup wiped off and her natural hair pulled out from beneath the black bob wig she wore for the shoot.
Five years after signing with Lil Wayne on the strength of her street DVD freestyles; four years after becoming an international superstar off the bubblegum pop of “Super Bass”; two years after offending rap purists with “Starships,” Minaj is dropping her third studio album, The Pinkprint, this fall. She’s calling it her “most personal” album yet. Judging by her output over the past year, The Pinkprint will have a little of everything, meaning it’ll be quintessential Nicki.
Last December, Minaj threw a couple of frenzied verses on “Boss Ass Bitch,” a viral YouTube hit by L.A. crunk girl group PTAF. While in “album mode,” she spent 2014 killing remixes to Young Thug’s “Danny Glover,” Rae Sremmurd’s “No Flex Zone,” and, most notably, Beyoncé’s “Flawless.” That’s on top of her own tracks “Yasss Bish,” “Chi-Raq,” and the cutthroat “Lookin’ Ass.” Her most recent singles—the soft and reflective relationship song “Pills N Potions” and the comically sexual “Anaconda”—display a versatility that, by now, feels like signature Nicki.
In August, after the MTV VMAs, when Nicki graced the red carpet without a wig or multicolored makeup or costume, the media dissected her aesthetic transition ad nauseum. Many said that her more natural look signaled the return of “Mixtape Nicki.” Even Lil Wayne has specific expectations in the wake of what’s been called “the makeunder”: “I’m looking forward to her going back to her roots—bar for bar straight lyrical content,” he says. “The last album showed her versatility, how she can make a straight hood/club banger and at the same time still be dominant in the pop industry. Now that she has tested the waters, she’s going back to [what] she enjoyed best.”
But it’s more complicated than that. In 2012, Minaj canceled her appearance at Hot 97’s Summer Jam after its host, Peter Rosenberg, threw shade at “Starships,” calling it “bullshit” that isn’t “real hip-hop.” Nearly a year later, she appeared on Rosenberg’s radio show, and offered perhaps the most succinct explanation of her MO as an artist. “I wanted to experiment,” she said in the reconciliatory radio interview. “My whole career has been a playing field for me to try new things. I never put a limit on myself. And I don’t like when—especially black—women put a limit on what they can do.”
A lot of people think they know Nicki Minaj. In fact, they think they know a few Nicki Minajs: “Mixtape Nicki,” “Pop Nicki,” “Diva Nicki,” “Theatrical Nicki,” “Fashion Nicki,” “Alter Ego Nicki a.k.a. Roman.” But “Dead-Ass-Tired-Lying-on-a-Couch Nicki” shows no sign of multiple personalities. She’s just one woman, albeit an incredibly busy one as she starts the promo campaign for her new album, and sees her sleep, personal, and family time vanish. Call her just Nicki.
As the night goes on, we talk about the misconceptions surrounding The Pinkprint, Nicki’s plans for making babies, and the guilt that comes with fame, but the interview doesn’t start well. She can barely keep her eyes open; her voice is soft and exasperated as she answers questions with her head tilted back, eyes half closed. But as soon as “Mixtape Nicki” is mentioned, she perks up—because no one is going to tell you what Nicki Minaj is doing except Nicki Minaj.
What’s behind your more natural look and your street singles reminiscent of earlier “Mixtape Nicki”?
I didn’t go back to “Mixtape Nicki.” That’s how [members of the media] feel, but that’s not what I’ve done. I’ve never stopped rapping; I’ve never stopped doing freestyles; I’ve never stopped doing remixes and features; I’ve never stopped raising the bar lyrically. I understand and respect people’s opinions when they hear me do certain things and say she’s “going back,” but I haven’t gone back, I’ve moved forward. I’ve always been evolving.
You’ve said The Pinkprint will be your most personal album yet. What are you addressing about your past and present that you haven’t before?
My family, loss, death, guilt…. I’ve struggled with a lot of guilt.
Guilt over what?
When you’re working and you’re busy and you’re successful, no matter what, something suffers, whether it’s your relationship with your mother, your relationship with your whole family, not being able to go to your brother’s graduation…. Certain things suffer and take the back burner, not because they’re on the back burner in your heart but because the world just moves so quickly. A lot of people, when they’re chasing their dreams, they have to leave people they love. A lot of artists feel that guilt but they don’t express it.
Your family is still in New York City?
Right, and I live in L.A., so when I wake up in the morning, I can’t just run across the street and hug my mother, hug my little brother, kiss my little brother or older brother. I have to get on a six-hour flight to see them, and then, even when I go to New York, I’m lucky if I can see them for a couple hours. I go to New York all the time and I’m so ashamed to say that I could be out there for a few days and not even be able to see my family because of my schedule. I don’t even get lunch penciled in my schedule. Sleep is out of the question—everything seems to become more important.
Has your relationship with your family suffered?
Yes, because I feel like I’m the voice of reason in my family and I’ve always taken control and tried to lead and tried to be the one to help my family stay on the right path. When I’m not there, and something doesn’t work out, I always think to myself, “If I was there, this wouldn’t have happened.”
Despite your stardom, there are rarely paparazzi photos of you. You seem to have control over your image and personal life. Do you worry about losing privacy?
I worry to an extent. It doesn’t keep me up at night but I would be lying if I said that privacy isn’t important to me. I’ve always been like that. I give so much; I don’t curb myself in my music and I try my best to be straightforward when I do interviews. So, I do worry. What if I didn’t have something sacred? What if I wasn’t able to keep my secrets? How would that make me feel? I’ve always prided myself on not talking about certain things, holding certain things dear to my heart and leaving them just for me.
Jay Z’s The Blueprint inspired the title The Pinkprint and the idea of laying the blueprint for female rappers to come. What similarities do you see between you right now and Jay circa The Blueprint?
I can’t. I have no idea what he was doing before The Blueprint dropped. It’s not that literal. People keep asking me about Jay’s The Blueprint and they think I’m doing something like that. I made reference to The Blueprint because Jay is the biggest rapper of our time. The name of the album was inspired by Jay but not the body of work. I do think that it’s going to create new rules, though, in [the way] that [The Blueprint did].
What are your new rules?
One rule is “no more self-judgment.” I’m not judging myself; I’m not dissing what I do. I’m proud of what I’ve done and I’m proud of what I’m working on. I’ve accomplished something and I’m not going to be ashamed to be happy about what I’ve done. I’m talking about things that I didn’t speak about on other albums. It’s a truthful body of work. The album is me doing a press conference, addressing things and not putting too much [emphasis] on “This has to be lyrical,” to the point where I lose focus of a message. It’s important as a woman to be vulnerable and be strong at the same time. The album is a dope balance of vulnerability and strength, of inspiration and of not being politically correct. It’s the best of both worlds. It’s tapping into both sides. There are times when all I want to do is be lyrical and create metaphors and experiment with my flow. Then there are times when I just want to tell a truthful story about love and have people identify with me.
All women can relate to that.
Every woman is multifaceted. Every woman has a switch, whether she’s going to be maternal, whether she’s going to be a man-eater, whether she has to kick ass, whether she has to be one of the boys, whether she has to show the guys that she’s just as smart or smarter, she’s just as talented or creative. Women suppress a lot of their sides.
“Pills N Potions” and “Anaconda” showed two completely different sides of you.
There’s never been such a huge gap between two singles. I purposely did that because that’s a representation of who I am. I’ve always been unpredictable. It keeps my fans guessing, and I love that.
Anyone who’s been in an unhealthy relationship can relate to “Pills N Potions.”
“Pills N Potions” isn’t just about relationships. A couple of my girlfriends I hadn’t spoken to in a while reached out to me after they heard “Pills N Potions.” That struck such a chord with people. The message—we still love [each other] but we’re angry—we feel that way all the time, we just don’t say it. And a lot of times you don’t even get over that, you just have to keep it moving.
[quote]I’m at the level in my career and in my life now where I can do whatever the hell I want to[/quote][/one_half_last]
What did you want to accomplish with “Anaconda”?
I wanted to create a song that embraced curvy women. I wanted to be sexual but be playful with it. And I wanted it to be so melodic that even if you don’t understand English you could still go along with the melody and you would have no idea about all the raunchy shit I’m saying—I get a kick out of that. It was simple to write. I just created the melody and then I let the words happen. I started laughing when I said, “Boy toy named Troy.” [Laughs.] That whole song, I was just being dumb. It was a joke. My biggest thing was seeing how my girlfriends Sherika and Thembi were going to react. If they don’t like a song, they’ll be like, “No.” As soon as they walked in the studio, we were laughing and having fun. I thought, if we’re doing this, then everybody is going to have fun with it.
What did you want to do with the backshot artwork that caused such a frenzy?
The artwork was not premeditated. I was shooting the “Anaconda” video and I had my photographer there taking pictures. When I was about to shoot my next scene, I asked to see the pictures he’d taken. He went through five or six and that one came up, and I was like, “[Gasps.] Oh my God. Yo, that picture is crazy!” What made me excited about it was that people hadn’t seen me do a picture like that in years. The reason why I stopped taking pictures like that was because I needed to prove myself. I needed for people to take me seriously. I needed for people to respect my craft. I’ve proven that I’m an MC. I’m a writer; I’m the real deal, so if I want to take sexy pictures, I can. I’m at the level in my career and in my life now where I can do whatever the hell I want to.
The video was equally jaw-dropping. You’re twerking and a lot of dudes were probably watching, getting excited—and then you have the banana-chopping scene. Pull them in, entice them, then….
[Laughs.] Absolutely. Abso-freaking-lutely. Then at the end, when Drake is trying to touch me and I’m slapping his hands away…. It was random and impromptu.
Drake—in the friend zone forever.
[Laughs.] Oh, no.
But the last scene with him sitting in the chair, his sad face in his hands….
It’s so cute. He’s such a dope actor. After he did that we just busted out laughing and we all were cracking up. He’s such a good sport. I love that he makes fun of himself and doesn’t take himself too seriously. That’s why my friendship with him works so well. That’s why I love him to death.
You faced a lot of backlash for the sexuality of the “Anaconda” video and artwork. A dad even wrote an open letter to you about it. What’s your response?
“Shut your stupid ass up. Bye, dad.” I laughed at it. But I also didn’t even know that that was happening.
You’re on Twitter all the time. Do you read what blogs write about you?
I’m not on blogs, so I didn’t know. People see me retweet stuff and they think I’m some Internet person but I’m not. A lot of times, with the controversy surrounding “Lookin’ Ass,” for example, I didn’t know anything about it until it was so late it would’ve been crazy for me to address it. Every now and then, people in my circle will say, “Did you know blah blah blah?” People on my team know I don’t want to hear any drama. I don’t want any negativity. I don’t want to hear what’s on the blog. I don’t care.
[youtube url=”<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/LDZX4ooRsWs” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>” width=”560″ height=”315″]
Do you not care? Or are you pretending not to care?
I don’t care. I used to care, now I don’t care.
What made you stop caring?
The only thing I ever cared about was people questioning [my rapping], because I know that I’m as authentic as they come when it comes to being a freaking MC. My first year in the game, I actually lost sleep over rumors, and then I realized, “What? This is entertainment.” These people will write anything about you to get attention and when you’re successful and famous, they know that when they say your name, people are going to click on the story. Now, to be completely honest, I don’t care. Sometimes if I hear something completely outrageous I’ll laugh, but no, the only thing I care about is my peace of mind, my well-being, my home, my family, the people I love, and the fact that I’m continuing to be successful in my industry. Everything else comes with the territory. You just have to get in on the joke, that’s what I realized.
Did Drake teach you that?
[Laughs.] That’s what I’m saying. You’ve got to be in on it. It takes so much pressure off your life. I realize that a lot of times, people critique the people they love the most and feel the most attached to. Regular people don’t even realize how much artists mean to them. Artists represent a lot to the average person. People listen to music all day on their iPods, so as artists, we become a real fixture in people’s lives. As an artist, you can’t take it personal. It’s like your big brother teasing you. As long as it’s not malicious. I haven’t had any issues lately and things have been good for the most part. When I do see things, people are saying good things like, “She killed this verse.” I’m happy that people push me to work hard, to be honest. Sometimes you need to be pushed in the right direction. Sometimes you need to be reminded, “Hey! Look! [Snaps.] You’re here for a reason. You got here by busting your ass. Don’t fail.”
In 2012, when you spoke with Miss Info for your last COMPLEX cover, you said, “In five years, ideally, I’d like to be married and have kids.” This year, you said that the end goal is to make $500 million and do five albums. Would you retire after five albums and just have a family?
Yeah. I won’t use the word “retire” but I would use the word “vacation”—because I don’t believe in vacations, I don’t believe in holidays. I have to put out all six of my albums, contractually. After the fifth, I’ll probably have my baby. I wonder if I’m going to be one of those women who balances my child with a career. I always said, “When I have my baby, it’s going to be all about my baby.” I don’t want the child feeling like they don’t have all of my attention, so I always said, “I’m going to take a little break.” But we’ll see.
What’s your biggest fear?
That I’ll become so consumed with work that I’ll forget to live my personal life to the fullest. If I’m done with my fifth album and I don’t have a child by then, no matter how much money I have, I would be disappointed, as a woman, because I feel like I was put here to be a mother. I have definitely put off the wife thing because I don’t want people in my business. I’d rather not do anything that’s going to be on paper but I definitely will be married before I have my baby. I want to make sure I do it in that order. I’ve always felt like that since I was young; my mother always put that in my head. By the fifth album, I will have walked down the aisle and I will at least be on baby number one, possibly baby number two. [Laughs.] And have $500 million.
“MEET MY WOMAN!!! AKA introduces Zinhle to President Cyril Ramaphosa!
Chilling at the ANC’s election call centre after his short visit to Chiawelo, Cyril Ramaphosa took the time out of his busy day to hit up local celebrities including AKA, Bonang and DJ Tira, on Instagram Live in a bid to spur young voters to make their mark on the ballot on Election Day.
Shortly after he and his wife, Dr Tshepo Motsepe, cast their vote at Hitekani Primary School, Ramaphosa could barely hold himself from showing his excitement for the election process that has — for the most part — been running smoothly.
But there is more work to do, so Ramaphosa took advantage of his connections with the higher-ups of the South African entertainment industry to garner more visibility on Election Day.
While his counterparts were on the ground, spurring people to “vote for change”, the president was sharing screens on Instagram Live with AKA and his ‘babe’ DJ Zinhle, Bonang, and DJ Tira.
WATCH: Our President, Comrade @CyrilRamaphosa makes an INSTAGRAM call to @akaworldwide. The President also interacts with @DJZinhle who was with AK during the call. #iVoteANC #voteANC pic.twitter.com/WWNrcgJkxC
— #VoteANC (@MYANC) May 8, 2019
Earlier in the day, AKA and his mates had huddled up in his wagon and made their way to cast their ballot blasting struggle songs, a clear indication of who their Xs were going to.
The president shared his appreciation of the rapper’s efforts in encouraging the youth to go out and vote, and with his immense influence, we can only imagine that the feed did achieve its objective.
DJ Tira teases Ramaphosa’s head
— #VoteANC (@MYANC) May 8, 2019
DJ Tira could not really chat for too long, as he was on a flight to Durban to cast his vote. Does he not know that you can vote at any polling station in the country? He must’ve missed that memo.
Ramaphosa and Bonang call on voters to ‘wake up’
This one was a little awkward. The president would not stay on the call for too long with Bonang Matheba because she still had to go cast her vote. It’s hilarious how Ramaphosa cut that call short before Bonang could get him to say hello to her watching fans.
Inside Facebook’s ‘cult-like’ workplace!!! 12 whistleblowers reveal all
At a company-wide town hall in early October, numerous Facebook employees got in line to speak about their experiences with sexual harassment.
The company called the special town hall after head of policy Joel Kaplan caused an internal uproar for appearing at the congressional hearing for Judge Brett Kavanaugh. A young female employee was among those who got up to speak, addressing her comments directly to COO Sheryl Sandberg.
“There shouldn’t be this pressure to pretend to love something when I don’t feel this way,” said the employee, setting off a wave of applause from her colleagues at the emotional town hall in Menlo Park, California.
The episode speaks to an atmosphere at Facebook in which employees feel pressure to place the company above all else in their lives, fall in line with their manager’s orders and force cordiality with their colleagues so they can advance. Several former employees likened the culture to a “cult.”
This culture has contributed to the company’s well-publicized wave of scandals over the last two years, such as governments spreading misinformation to try to influence elections and the misuse of private user data, according to many people who worked there during this period. They say Facebook might have have caught some of these problems sooner if employees were encouraged to deliver honest feedback. Amid these scandals, Facebook’s share price fell nearly 30 percent in 2018 and nearly 40 percent since a peak in July, resulting in a loss of more than $252 billion in market capitalization.
Meanwhile, Facebook’s reputation as being one of the best places in Silicon Valley to work is starting to show some cracks. According to Glassdoor, which lets employees anonymously review their workplaces, Facebook fell from being the best place to work in the U.S. to No. 7 in the last year.
But employees don’t complain in the workplace.
“There’s a real culture of ‘Even if you are f—ing miserable, you need to act like you love this place,’” said one ex-employee who left in October. “It is not OK to act like this is not the best place to work.”
This account is based on conversations with more than a dozen former Facebook employees who left between late 2016 and the end of 2018. These people requested anonymity in describing Facebook’s work culture, including its “stack ranking” employee performance evaluation system and their experiences with it, because none is authorized by Facebook to talk about their time there. This stack ranking system is similar to the one that was notoriously used by Microsoft before the company abandoned it in 2013, the former Facebook employees said.
Facebook declined to comment on former employees’ characterization of the work place as “cult-like.”
Former employees describe a top-down approach where major decisions are made by the company’s leadership, and employees are discouraged from voicing dissent — in direct contradiction to one of Sandberg’s mantras, “authentic self.”
For instance, at an all-hands meeting in early 2017, one employee asked Facebook Vice President David Fischer a tough question about a company program. Fischer took the question and answered, but within hours, the employee and his managers received angry calls from the team running that program, this person said.
“I never felt it was an environment that truly encouraged ‘authentic self’ and encouraged real dissent because the times I personally did it, I always got calls,” said the former manager, who left the company in early 2018.
The sentiment was echoed by another employee who left in 2017.
“What comes with scale and larger operations is you can’t afford to have too much individual voice,” said this person. “If you have an army, the larger the army is, the less individuals have voice. They have to follow the leader.”
In this employee’s two years at Facebook, his team grew from a few people to more than 50. He said “it was very much implied” to him and his teammates that they trust their leaders, follow orders and avoid having hard conversations.
The company’s culture of no-dissent prevented employees from speaking up about the impact that News Feed had on influencing the 2016 U.S. election, this person added.
The message was clear in August 2016 when the company laid off the editorial staff of its trending news team, shortly after some workers on that team leaked to the press that they were suppressing conservative-leaning stories. Employees were further discouraged from speaking up following the election, when CEO Mark Zuckerberg brushed off the accusation that Facebook could have impacted the election, calling that idea “crazy.”
The former employee described “a bubble” at the company in which employees are dissuaded from giving managers critical feedback or challenging decisions.
“I’m pretty disappointed in that because I have a lot of respect for Sheryl, and she preaches about giving hard feedback,” the employee said.
“All the things we were preaching, we weren’t doing enough of them. We weren’t having enough hard conversations. They need to realize that. They need to reflect and ask if they’re having hard conversations or just being echo chambers of themselves.”
Many former employees blamed the cult-like atmosphere partly on Facebook’s performance review system, which requires employees to get reviews from approximately five of their peers twice a year. This peer review system pressures employees to forge friendships with colleagues at every possible opportunity, whether it be going to lunch together each day or hanging out after work.
“It’s a little bit of a popularity contest,” said one manager who left the company in 2017. “You can cherry-pick the people who like you — maybe throw in one bad apple to equalize it.”
Peers can provide feedback directly to their colleagues, or they can send the reviews to the employee’s manager. That feedback is typically treated as anonymous and cannot be challenged.
“You have invisible charges against you, and that figures mightily into your review,” said an employee who left in October. “Your negative feedback can haunt you for all your days at Facebook.”
Several former employees said that peers and managers iced them out because they had personal commitments or problems that required significant attention outside of work.
For instance, one employee who left in recent weeks said a manager was critical in a public team meeting because the employee didn’t attend a team-building event outside work. At the time, this person was going through a divorce.
“She definitely marked me down for not attending those team-building events, but I couldn’t attend because I was going through my own issues and needed work-life balance,” said the employee.
Employees are not required to attend after-hours events, according to a Facebook spokeswoman, adding that collaboration is important at the company.
Another manager who also left the company in recent weeks said she once took multiple weeks of vacation instead of going on medical leave to treat a major illness. She says she did this based on advice from her supervisor.
“I was afraid that if I told too many people or took too much time off, I would be seen as unable to do my job,” the former manager said. “I was scared that if I let up in any way, shape or form they would crumble me, and they did.”
Ironically, one of the best ways to see the desperation to be liked is to follow Facebook employees on Facebook itself.
Employees parade the company’s projects and post any report on the benefits of working at the company or the positive impact the company is making on the world. This is in part a show for peers and managers, former employees said.
“People are very mindful about who they’re connected with on Facebook who they also work with and how what they’re posting will put them in a favorable light to their managers,” an employee who left in 2016 said.
As with many social media users, the online content does not always reflect the offline emotions.
“There’s so many people there who are unhappy, but their Facebook posts alone don’t reflect the backdoor conversations you have with people where they’re crying and really unhappy,” she said.
Twice a year, this peer feedback comes into play in so-called calibration meetings, where employees are given one of seven grades.
Managers deliberate with their peers to grade employees in all levels below them. As the review process moves up the chain over the course of multiple weeks, lower-level managers gradually leave the room, until the company’s vice presidents finish the calibration. At this point, Zuckerberg and Sandberg sign off that their vice presidents have done due diligence, and each employee’s grade for the past six months is finalized.
But there’s a companywide limit on the percentage of employees who can receive each grade. So during the reviews process, managers compete against their peer managers to secure strong grades for their direct reports. Managers are compelled to vouch fiercely for their favorite employees, but don’t speak up for employees they don’t like or who have previously received poor ratings.
“There’s a saying at Facebook that once you have one bad half, you’re destined for bad halves the rest of your time there. That stigma will follow you,” said a manager who left in September.
According to two former executives, the grade breakdown is approximately as follows:
- “Redefine,” the highest grade, is given to fewer than 5 percent of employees
- “Greatly exceeds expectations”: 10 percent
- “Exceeds”: 35 percent
- “Meets all”: 35 to 40 percent
- “Meets most,” a low grade that puts future employment at risk, goes to most of the remaining 10 to 15 percent
- “Meets some” grades are extremely rare and are seen as an indication that you’re probably getting fired, according to multiple employees.
- “Does not meet” are exceptionally rare, as most employees are fired before they get to that level.
The distribution of these grades are not a hard limit but rather a recommended guidance for managers to follow, according to a Facebook spokeswoman.
Facebook isn’t the only tech company to use a performance evaluation system where a percentage of employees is pegged to each performance grade, meaning that there’s always a fixed population at risk of being fired. Pioneered by Jack Welch at General Electric in the 1990s and sometimes known as “stack ranking,” this method is fairly common in Silicon Valley and was most notoriously used by Microsoft until the company got rid of it in 2013 after widespread employee complaints.
Stack ranking systems work well at companies with competitive environments that compare employees on objectively measurable performance, according to Alexandra Michel, professor at the University of Pennsylvania who studies work culture. However, the system tends to break down and cause distrust among employees and create a political atmosphere when applied by companies that measure performance subjectively, or companies that demand employee loyalty in exchange for benefits and the promise of career advancement, Michel said.
“If you have an environment that is completely cutthroat like Wall Street, this system works pretty well,” Michel said. “But if you have employees who come in and want to be taken care of, want to learn, want to be part of a warm group and people who care about them — that’s a very jarring mismatch.”
Since early 2017, Facebook has become more rigorous in distributing grades by specific percentages, according to multiple former employees.
“I had a boss literally say to me ‘You don’t have enough people in ‘meets some,’ ‘meets most,’ and ‘meets all,’” said a former director who left earlier this year. “I was finding myself making up things to be hypercritical of employees to give them lower ratings than they really deserved.”
These twice-yearly reviews encourage employees to be particularly productive around June and December, working nights and weekends as they race to impress bosses before reviews, which are typically completed in August and February. It’s especially true in December, the half Facebook predominantly uses to determine which employees will receive promotions.
This rush causes employees to focus on short-term goals and push out features that drive user engagement and improve their own metrics without fully considering potential long-term negative impacts on user experience or privacy, multiple former employees said.
“If you’re up for promotion, and it’s based on whether you get a product out or not, you’re almost certainly going to push that product out,” a former engineer said. “Otherwise you’re going to have to wait another year to get that promotion.”
As employees begin gathering peer reviews and buckling up for their next round of calibrations in February, the process will reveal how employees are thinking of the company after a bruising 2018, according to employees who left recently.
There will be an extra level of anxiety around the process this time, one person said. Folks who have been wanting to leave will be hoping to notch a high rating so they can depart on good terms. Others who are committed to the company will be torn between speaking up about their concerns or staying in line for the sake of their careers. Any changes to company’s grading process this time could reveal whether Facebook is taking special steps to keep valued employees around, or continuing along the same lines.
“This review cycle will be particularly colorful for them,” according to a director who left recently.
Prayers Up: Kirk Franklin Posts Heartbreaking Message About His Sister Being Sentenced To 30 Years In Prison
In a recent Instagram post, American gospel sensation, Kirk Franklin, shared a heart breaking post that his sister has been arrested and will spend 30 years in prison:
The 48-year-old ‘My life is in your hands’ singer did not reveal why his sister was arrested, but according to BET, “…he’s been open about the drama that surrounded her life, including her addiction to crack-cocaine.”
In 2015, Kirk said about his sister who is struggling with addiction to crack cocaine:
“For over ten years, my younger sister was incarcerated in a facility here in Texas. She was in love with a young man who was drug dealer. He introduced her to not only selling drugs, but using as well. When he was arrested for drug trafficking, she was arrested along with him. After she served her time, she was brought before the review board who determined she was ready to be released and brought back into society. The documents were signed and she was set free… but only on paper.”
“After a few months back into the free world, it became obvious to me rather quickly that my sister was still in prison,” he continued. “It’s what they call being institutionalized. She quickly started using again, becoming very reckless with her body, which turned into her using it as a means to pay for her habit,” he continued.
He captioned the post, “rough week…”