Deathwatch: Joystiq and other AOL closures?
The gaming industry is having a nightmare since consoles discovered they could flog their own wares as downloads through their bespoke online stores. GAME is under Deathwatch again and now, with AOL looking at restructuring, Joystiq might be set for the chopping board.
Basically, AOL are rejigging their media business and its sales team, and that looks likely to lead to the closure of multiple websites.
TechCrunch, which is owned by AOL, say that the company are "preparing to lay off staff and close or fold up underperforming titles as part of a bigger restructuring, aimed at simplifying the company around ad tech, stronger content operations and video."
Sites that are struggling for traffic are KitchenDaily, Pawnation and Joystiq.
Joystiq themselves said: "'AOL is likely to shutter' Joystiq... Hey, wait a minute... that's us! Well, we may as well handle this the same way we've been covering the video game industry for ten years."
""We do not comment on rumor and speculation," one staffer told us, wishing to remain anonymous, preparing for their lucrative PR career. Others are still trying to figure out next steps. Another anonymous staffer said, "We're still working until we can't." Sources tell Joystiq that the staff is aware of the closure, but corporate hasn't officially told them, so they are unable to acknowledge anything out of concern that it will cause immediate shutdown. We've reached out for more information. We will update, as we always have, when we know more."
January has been a bleak month for retail and media and it doesn't look like it is going to quit any time soon.