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While on the face of it Twitch is a thriving company growing exponentially, it appears, behind-the-scenes at least, things couldn’t be more different. This comes in the wake of news that over 25 staff members, including some that have been with the company since the very beginning, having been fired or laid off via management shake-up.
The news comes from eSports consultant Rod Breslau who revealed on Twitter that staff from both the Twitch Studios team as well as its Community and Marketing wings were let go. Those with knowledge of the incident, according to Breslau, were told it was due to a company-wide re-adjustment.
Some Twitch employees were fired by new Twitch VP of Content Michael Aragon who wasn’t even in the office and did this via a remote Google Hangouts call. Employees were told to leave immediately. Morale is at an all-time low at Twitch, with one saying “We got amazon’d. Sad day.”
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) 30 March 2018
It appears that new Twitch Vice President of Content (what an ironic title, sheesh) Michael Aragon instigated the firings – but failed to do so in person. All employees who received the news were told to leave the Twitch offices immediately.
Among those apparently let go was Street Fighter mainstay Justin Wong, as well as Video Production Manager Adam Contini who departed with a Tweet detailing his feelings of the layoffs, saying they were “crushing” for him.
As someone who has worked on, adjacent to and with that platform for 11 years, suddenly not being there any more is… physically painful. I apologize if I’m sharing too much information. I am trying very hard to express what it had meant to me, and it’s difficult.
— Adam Contini (@shmegegge) 30 March 2018
This seems to chime with Breslau’s source who says that they were “Amazon’d” (for clarity, this is in reference to widespread, sudden redundancies for Amazon staff in February) and that morale was an all-time low.
For now, it appears Twitch’s restructuring is going to allow them to evolve in a different direction. It’s clear that Twitch, ironically, has cut many content-creators that enabled the service and company to grow into the behemoth we see today. and, yet, the sour taste in the mouth of many whose favourite creators and community figureheads were let go may not leave them for some time.