MySpace had a mass bloodletting of employees yesterday, firing 500 people or about half of its staff.
It’s not unexpected that these former employees, some of whom were apparently working under the impression that their jobs would be safe despite the reported decline of the company, would feel a profound sense of betrayal after the fact.
And then there is the anonymous email TechCrunch received from a former MySpace employee who accused the now CEO of MySpace Mike Jones and his executives for “knowingly” using its employees, falsely reassuring and “inspiring them,” and thus driving hundreds of people to give “20 hour days, even 48 hour sleepless stints, for a company that everyone else in the world said was dead.”
From the email:
Jones reassured those loyal, hard working employees that News corp was “on board” with the plan to relaunch Myspace as “social entertainment”, and he had been promised they would have patience and give the new site time to be successful before making changes.
As it turns out, Mr. Jones and his lieutenants knowingly *used* their employees, working them hard, making them give up time with their friends and families, knowing all along that no matter how hard they worked, and how successful their efforts, many of them would be rewarded with layoffs.
The email is remarkably bitter. The former employee goes on to accuse the MySpace executives of building “stealth projects” such as “project Burn” and “plotting secret backroom deals to prevent a sale of Myspace by News Corp” instead of doing their jobs.
Of course, an email from a former, fired employee may not paint the most reliable portrait of what really went on at MySpace. But it serves as a sad reminder of what life is like in a failing company.
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