Amid a sea of mass layoffs in the tech industry, Amazon’s previously announced intent to reduce its workforce with nearly 20,000 job cuts began rolling out this week—and reports are that Comixology, the digital comics storefront Amazon purchased in 2014, is being hit hard.
News of major cuts at Comixology emerged on social media yesterday afternoon, as program manager Scott McGovern confirmed his exit among “numerous” others. Anonymous staff speaking to Polygon alledged that Comixology employees—who are part of Amazon’s Stores division, the division these new layoffs largely focus on—have been told that while some are being let go as of this week, more have been informed on whether they were going to be cut in coming months or later in 2023.
The true scope of the layoffs at Comixology is unknown, leaving its fate uncertain—especially in the wake of a highly controversial rehaul of the platform last year. The changes went far beyond redesigning the app and website for the leading digital comics storefront and included a disastrous integration of the service more closely into Amazon’s storefronts, shutting down Comixology’s own website in the process. Between mass errors, clunky navigation, title discoverability issues, and the end of a long-running creator royalties program in favor of using Amazon’s ebook publishing system Kindle Direct, Comixology spent much of the last year apologizing for and attempting to fix the litany of issues, an ongoing process.
Or at least, was. Amazon’s moves to gut Comixology after nearly a year of customer and creator strife potentially doesn’t just threaten the service’s presence at the forefront of digital comics distribution, but its existence at all.
Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.