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I know some gamers within the gaming community has their beef with IGN, but it's always a sad day whenever people in the business lose their jobs. In this case, the staff at IGN have been hit with major layoffs after Ziff Davis Media/J2 Global purchased the company from News Corp after IGN was put up for bid.
Ziff Davis grabbed up the IGN multi-networks back in February for an undisclosed amount of money, as reported by Escapist Magazine. Early Thursday morning Joystiq confirmed that IGN was hit with major layoffs following the acquisition and that the site, along with Askmen.com, will be the major focus for the network moving forward.
According to a spokesperson...
“We are focusing on our two flagship brands, IGN and AskMen. Unfortunately, as a result, we have made the decision to close sites and restructure our teams accordingly,"
Joystiq is reporting that UGO, 1UP and GameSpy are all scheduled to shutdown. I really hope that's not entirely true because by Jove does GameSpy have some good content and they really do a great job over there of trying to be consumer-friendly and consumer-conscious during these times.
Nevertheless, this kind of news wasn't entirely unexpected. Dan “Shoe” Hsu recently commented this past January about this very scenario, noting that IGN would be shrinking. I don't think anyone thought they would be shrinking so soon, or that many other sites would be joining them or going away completely.