ComiXology Gutted by Amazon Layoffs, Former Workers Fear For the Service’s Future

As ComiXology is hit onerous by Amazon layoffs, former and present workers members query what the longer term has in retailer for the service.

Social media dialog round ComiXology erupted on Jan. 18 after main redundancies had been reported on the Amazon-owned firm.

Based on Amazon journalist Jason Del Ray, Amazon retail CEO Doug Herrington issued a notice notifying staff of the layoffs within the morning, emphasizing that it was “an necessary a part of a wider effort to decrease our price to serve so we are able to proceed investing within the wide variety, low costs, and quick transport that our clients love.” Whereas ComiXology was not particularly talked about within the report, staff of the digital comics firm clarified on Twitter that that they had been affected. ComiXology founders David Steinberger and John D. Roberts chimed in, noting that they had been saddened over the lack of jobs.

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CBR reached out to Amazon for remark, and was referred to a common submit about Amazon’s layoffs with no particulars relating to ComiXology’s scenario. A portion of the statement, written by Amazon CEO Andy Jassay, reads: “As I shared again in November, as a part of our annual planning course of for 2023, leaders throughout the corporate have been working with their groups and taking a look at their workforce ranges, investments they need to make sooner or later, and prioritizing what issues most to clients and the long-term well being of our companies. This yr’s overview has been tougher given the unsure economic system and that we’ve employed quickly over the past a number of years. In November, we communicated the onerous determination to eradicate quite a lot of positions throughout our Gadgets and Books companies, and likewise introduced a voluntary discount supply for some staff in our Individuals, Expertise, and Expertise (PXT) group. I additionally shared that we weren’t completed with our annual planning course of and that I anticipated there can be extra function reductions in early 2023.

“As we speak, I needed to share the end result of those additional evaluations, which is the tough determination to eradicate extra roles. Between the reductions we made in November and those we’re sharing at present, we plan to eradicate simply over 18,000 roles. A number of groups are impacted; nevertheless, nearly all of function eliminations are in our Amazon Shops and PXT organizations. S-team and I are deeply conscious that these function eliminations are tough for individuals, and we don’t take these selections evenly or underestimate how a lot they could have an effect on the lives of those that are impacted. We’re working to help those that are affected and are offering packages that embrace a separation cost, transitional medical health insurance advantages, and exterior job placement help.”

Scott McGovern, who beforehand labored as a program supervisor at ComiXology for a decade, posted a Twitter thread within the aftermath of the layoffs. McGovern estimated that “not less than 50% of the workers have been let go,” and added that the quantity is likely to be as excessive as 75%. McGovern additionally wrote that he was “not optimistic” about the way forward for digital comics at Amazon regardless of the very best efforts of ComiXology workers.

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Others, whether or not they be comedian followers or former staff, additionally commented on the scenario.

ComiXology was totally built-in with Amazon firstly of 2022 after beforehand present as a separate website and app. On the day of integration, ComiXology’s desktop reader was shuttered and customers had been shuffled to an Amazon subsite to buy their books. Many had been unable to entry comics that they had already purchased on account of confusion relating to the buggy consumer interface, and business creators — together with the likes of Gail Simone, Greg Pak and Jim Zub — rallied in opposition to the adjustments. ComiXology later admitted that the mixing with Amazon had been “removed from seamless.” The corporate continued to handle quite a lot of these criticisms in mid-2022, emphasizing that staff had been onerous at work to enhance the consumer interface and create a brand new, dependable desktop reader.

Supply: Twitter, Amazon