Netflix’s blog Tudum, an onomatopoeia meant to resemble the sound made when the app starts, is now sounding more like ta-“doom” after the streaming giant suddenly laid off its blog staff Thursday afternoon.
The blog had hired industry writers, some of whom had come from sites like G/O’s own A.V. Club and Jezebel, to write about Netflix programming, including interviews with showmakers and other rundowns of the latest content coming to the platform.
According to multiple tweets, the layoffs came in late afternoon on Thursday, and many were reportedly blindsided by the news. Now-former writers took to Twitter after the layoffs to announce they were open for work. Several expressed feelings of having the rug pulled out from under them.
We reached out to several former Tudum staff, and though none have responded yet, we will update the story if any wish to comment on the layoffs.
A Netflix spokesperson told Gizmodo “Our fan website Tudum is an important priority for the company.” The spokesperson declined to say how many staff were laid off. They added that Tudum would still continue to exist, but would not confirm what form the blog will take in the coming months.
Some tweets from former staff referred to the entire team being laid off, though Gizmodo could not confirm how many were on the Tudum team at the time of the cuts. But considering that the Wall Street Journal reported a single episode of Stranger Things cost nearly $30 million to produce, the overall cost for blog employees seems a comparative pittance.
Still, it seems that Netflix is on a cost-cutting crusade. The platform has been axing planned shows and movies left and right over the past few weeks since the company announced in its quarterly earnings report that it had lost over 200,000 customers, with more expected to leave over the next quarter. Even though it reported a 10% revenue increase, its stock plummeted nearly 30%, and though it has bounced back slightly in the last few weeks, the company is looking for ways to potentially scrape together more revenue. The company is even considering cracking down on password sharing and including ads on the platform.
Additional reporting by Lauren Leffer