Although mainstream media across America are feeling the negative force of the current financial crisis, so too are their counterparts in the web 2.0 world of the digerati.
Several high-profile digital media companies — including Al Gore’s Current TV network, Wired Magazine, and blogging software maker SixApart — all announced substantial job cuts and corporate restructuring plans on Tuesday.
Current has cut at least 30 positions and offered this official statement:
Current Media today announced changes to its structure and staffing. Approximately 60 positions have been eliminated in the company’s three U.S. offices and approximately 30 new positions created. Many of those whose positions were eliminated have been placed in the new positions. Current will have approximately 410 employees (after these staffing adjustments). These changes result from the development of a new, innovative programming strategy built around eight cross-platform channels, including news, comedy, music and technology, slated to premiere in the first quarter of 2009. Current’s new programming strategy expands upon its pioneering use of viewer created content to include additional opportunities for participation, creating a far more viewer-influenced network, and further unifies the Company’s online and TV platforms by having each web channel paired with a companion TV show. In addition, these changes enable Current Media to reduce its cost structure, thereby assuring that it will be comfortably profitable in 2009 regardless the depth and length of the recession.
Wired has ditched more than 25% of their San Francisco newsroom:
A quarter of the 50-something employees in Wired.com’s San Francisco newsroom are gone, a source tells us — and with them, the bubbly delusion that Wired would not just report on the transformation of media by technology, but be a part of the revolution as well. The cuts hit Wired’s tech team heavily, though some writers and editors also got pink slips. (CNET reports that 3 out of 28 editorial staffers are gone, but a Wired insider says that the actual number of edit jobs cut is at least six.)
And Six Apart is laying off 8% of its workforce:
The company is laying off 8 percent of its 200-plus workforce, and shifting more resources into its services business. Cofounder Ben Trott is taking a bigger role running Six Apart’s blog-hosting business. Alden and other top managers are taking a 15 percent paycut. The only disappointment: That the company didn’t kill off Vox, its interminably boring free personal blogging service.
There’s simply no such thing as job security, at this point, even in the previously insulated online space of Silicon Valley’s internet giants.
To follow the fallout, check out Wired’s handy, if pessimistic, Tech Layoff Tracker.
Is anyone out there making money?
Tags: Culture | software | San Francisco | wired | Blogging | Al Gore | Current TV | Silicon Valley | Six Apart | current | online media | digital media | digerati | Financial crisis | Tech & Biz | Job cuts | blogging software