Twitter Inc CFO Oops Moment: Private Tweet Went Public

Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) Chief Financial Officer Anthony Noto had an Oops moment on Monday when he publicly tweeted his private plans to buy a company. The tweet also included the way he wanted the deal to go through at a meeting in mid-December.

Twitter declines to reveal recipient’s name

“I still think we should buy them,” Noto tweeted. “He is on your schedule for Dec 15 or 16 — we will need to sell him. I have a plan.”

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There was no hint to whom Noto was trying to send the message or which company he wants to buy. The message that was meant to be private, according to Twitter spokesman Jim Prosser, was posted on the micro-blogging platform, but was later deleted, says Bloomberg. Prosser declined to comment on the matter any further.

This incident reveals that even top Twitter officials cannot escape and sometimes get trapped. Twitter is highly concerned about its private and public messaging services and is passionately working to improve the service, revealed executives at a meeting with investors earlier this month.

Not a rare incident

These types of incidents are so frequent that they have a name, a “DM fail,” which stands for “direct message fail.” The direct message fail is not new and has happened a number of times. In 2010, a similar DM failure was witnessed when startup investor Dave McClure tweeted by mistake that another Silicon Valley Investor, Ron Conway, was trying to blame him for working with others to control the market for financing startups.

Noto, a former technology banker at Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) and former CFO at the National Football league, was an early follower of Twitter and started working with the company in 2009 when only a handful of bankers were active on the site. Since then, the micro-blogging site has garnered more users in financial circles, especially after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said in 2013 that it was an approved way for companies to reveal new information. Noto became chief financial officer for Twitter in July and has pushed the company to raise $1.8 billion in convertible debt in September, which the company plans to use in deal making.

In October, Twitter Chief Executive Officer Dick Costolo said in an interview that he is impressed by Noto’s incredible ability to ramp up the company’s speed.