AOL Denied Any Layoff Impact, but 2 Exit Black Voices
Two employees of AOL's black-focused site had sent farewell e-mails to colleagues the day before the company's denial.
Despite a statement from an AOL spokesman that AOL’s $315 million purchase of Huffington Post would have "no impact at all" on AOL Black Voices and AOL Latino, two employees of Black Voices had sent farewell e-mails to colleagues the day before.
The two are Alexis Garrett Stodghill, programming manager who supervised the Money division, and Timothy Cornwall, who ran BVX.com, a portion of the site devoted to readers under 35.
"If you're receiving this email it's because as AOL and I part ways (!) I want to acknowledge the people who I've met here who have made this experience enjoyable . . ." Cornwell wrote Thursday, attaching this YouTube video.
"It's been really great," Stodghill wrote in a goodbye e-mailed the same day.
After CEO Tim Armstrong announced Thursday that AOL was cutting as many as 900 jobs, including as many as 200 editorial staffers in the United States, Journal-isms asked AOL spokesman Graham James on Friday, "Can you say how AOL Latino and Black Voices are affected by the cutbacks?"
James replied by e-mail, "Not affected at all. If anything we will be ramping up our multicultural offerings with the addition of The Huffington Post."
On Monday, told that at least two employees at Black Voices said they were leaving, James said, "Content is not affected. We are not breaking out any individual employees or teams that were impacted. . . . Sorry if there was any confusion but I was referring to the overall content and AOL's commitment to these categories. We have not been providing any details on specific employees that were impacted from any department."
At least two other black journalists, editors in the AOL Music division, were laid off, one of them confirmed for Journal-isms on Monday.
Meanwhile, AOL freelancers were wondering whether a letter they received from management meant they were being fired, Henry Blodget wrote Monday for businessinsider.com.
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