Fandom Layoffs: Giant Bomb, GameSpot, Metacritic, TV Guide Sites Hit

Fandom has made an unspecified number of layoffs at GameSpot, Giant Bomb, Metacritic and TV Guide — four months after buying the entertainment and gaming sites for about $50 million — and also has let go other Fandom employees.

Multiple staffers of the websites affected by the job cuts posted on social media Thursday about the layoffs. A Fandom spokesperson declined to comment on the layoffs.

The layoffs affected less than 10% of the company’s total workforce, which comprises less than 500 employees, a source familiar with the cuts said.

Those who said they were laid off include: GameSpot entertainment editor Mat Elfring; Giant Bomb video producers Jess O’Brien and Jason Oestreicher; Stuart Kimball, associate video producer at GameSpot; Mason Downey, GameSpot entertainment writer; and Justin Vachon, a graphic designer who worked on Giant Bomb, GameSpot, TV Guide and Metacritic.

In a post on its Twitter account, Giant Bomb wrote, “It’s been a tough day for us at Giant Bomb and our friends at GameSpot. We’ll be going dark the rest of the day in light of today’s news.”

In October, San Francisco-based Fandom announced a deal to acquire GameSpot, Metacritic, TV Guide, GameFAQs, Giant Bomb, Cord Cutters News and Comic Vine from digital marketing firm Red Ventures. Fandom paid roughly $50 million in cash for the properties, sources said. Red Ventures in 2020 had acquired TV Guide, Metacritic, GameSpot and Giant Bomb as part of its $500 million deal to buy the CNET Media Group (previously part of CBS Interactive) from Paramount Global.

Fandom was founded in 2004 by Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia co-founder, and entrepreneur Angela Beesley Starling. In 2018, Fandom was sold to Integrated Media Co., a company headed by Jon Miller and backed by venture-capital firm TPG. According to the company, Fandom encompasses over 40 million content pages on 250,000 wikis about “every fictional universe ever created.”

Separately Thursday, Cord Cutter News founder Luke Bouma said he had reached a deal with Fandom to buy back the news and reviews site, which he had previously sold in 2020 to Red Ventures.

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