In a memo to employees, obtained by Kotaku today, Ziff Davis CEO Vivek Shah lays out the reasoning behind the shutter of three major gaming publications: 1Up, Gamespy, and UGO. Of course this comes on the heals of ZD's purchase of IGN and subsidiaries from Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.
Today we took some difficult but important actions that will ensure the continued growth and health of IGN and AskMen…. The changes we made today are designed to allow us to Simplify and Focus…. As a result of our decision to focus on our core brands, we are:
• Winding down 1UP.com, UGO.com, and GameSpy.com;
• No longer ad reaping 3rd party sites such as GameStop.com and FamilyGuy.com;
• Actively engaged with parties interested in acquiring IPL (IGN Pro League). IGN's role going forward will be to broadcast and cover a variety of eSports events;
• Dividing our ad sales team into two: one focused on IGN and the other focused on AskMen.
It seems apparent that 1UP, Gamespy, and UGO all heavily overlapped each other and IGN, so this was easily foreseen as a possible end. A lot of good folks are now looking for work as a result of this restructuring and we hope they find new opportunities quickly.