G/O Media saw more layoffs Friday as the company reallocated money from video production to other areas, like editorial. 15 staffers lost their jobs. G/O owns brands including The Onion, Deadspin, Gizmodo and Jezebel.
Kotaku senior video producer Chris Person tweeted that he had been laid off and added, “Also as far as I can tell Kotaku has no producers now.”
A G/O spokesperson confirmed to TheWrap, “In our efforts to strengthen editorial teams at G/O Media, we completed a thorough evaluation of our traffic and sites. In doing so, we’re making the unfortunate but necessary decision to change our current process of video production. While an important part of the business, some resources currently dedicated to video would be better used across other areas of the company, including editorial, and are being reallocated accordingly. As we evaluate the future of our video production structure, some of our video staff will be affected, effective today. It is always difficult to make these decisions, and we thank the affected employees for their time with us and wish them only the best. ”
The employees received a severance package.
Journalist David Ruddock quipped on Twitter, “More G/O Media layoffs today. Who could have seen it coming except everyone. This sucks and is bad.”
Writer Ryan Khosravi pointed out that the layoffs came just a week after extended unemployment benefits ended in the United States.
In April, 14 employees were laid off amid the coronavirus crisis. A statement at the time said the 14 people who lost their jobs comprised less than 5% of the company’s workforce. The release also got statistical: “The decision comes amid coronavirus concerns, where the publishing industry has seen a dramatic decrease in digital advertising spend — 33% according to a recent IAB Survey (IAB, C-19 Ad Spend Impact Survey). While G/O Media has noted increased traffic and higher eCommerce revenues, these positive results have not been enough to offset the increasingly deteriorating economic environment and considerable short-term loss of direct advertising revenue.”
Amid the pandemic, a number of media giants have seen layoffs as ad revenue continues to plummet because of business closures and inability — and lack of reason — to purchase ads.