Deep Staff Cuts Begin At Billboard, Vibe, Hollywood Reporter
Layoffs began on Tuesday at Billboard, Hollywood Reporter, and Vibe in an effort by owner Valence Media to dramatically reduce costs.
The cuts will total “$9-$10 million of personnel and headcount expenses,” an insider at the company told The Wrap. Deeper cuts were initially planned since losses at the media company are said to be $18-$19 million per year, according to the source. Other reports suggest a broader financial crisis at Valence Media
The staff at Vibe appears to have been all but eliminated. At least 8 were let go at Valence owned TV producer DCP.
The Hollywood Reporter will reportedly also be hit hard with staff cuts starting on Wednesday. On Monday HR editorial director Matthew Belloni exited abruptly “after clashing with Valence’s chief executives over journalistic ethics and editorial oversight.”
Billboard was hacked, apparently by its own former IT staff.
Wow. Billboard & Hollywood Reporter laid off their entire IT staff, so the IT staff posted it to the website.
— Zack Whittaker (@zackwhittaker) April 15, 2020
Former Staffers Took To Social Media
Today was my last day as deputy editor at @VibeMagazine. My position was eliminated as a result of various layoffs across the parent company in response to the coronavirus. Grateful to have nearly two years with one of the most iconic brands in music/cultural journalism. pic.twitter.com/sCvpzfKdlh
— William Ketchum III (@WEKetchum) April 14, 2020
After so many trips around the sun with VIBE, I’m sad to see it end like this. Myself, the rest of the staff and some great folks at Billboard were laid off today. This job changed my life in so many ways and I’m forever grateful for it. Excited to see where God takes me next.✨
— Desi 💫 (@Desire_Renee) April 14, 2020
I’m not even sure how to type this. I was laid off today with countless others at Billboard. It has been such a joy getting to know so many people in the industry & covering country music and Nashville. My email is in my bio as I try to figure out next steps.
— Annie Reuter (@yousingiwrite) April 14, 2020
Very rough day at Billboard, we lost a lot of good people. Taylor and I are OK but a lot of people aren’t and it really fucking sucks. Be kind to each other please.
— Dave Brooks (@RealDaveBrooks) April 15, 2020
Today myself & many colleagues at Billboard, Vibe & THR were laid off. I’m very proud of what we did in my 7 years at Billboard & ready to keep writing, editing, podcasting, creating. Hit me up for all things freelance (music, culture, sports, etc). Email & website are in bio 🙂
— chris payne (@cpayneonaplane) April 14, 2020
I’m one of the many who were laid off at Billboard today. Working with these incredible journalists has been a dream the last 2+ years. Many dreams came true while I was there – I hung out with Mariah and Patti Smith, cmon! – and I’m grateful for all of it, every minute. <3
— Hilary Hughes (@hilmonstah) April 14, 2020