Tencent Guts Gaming News Site Fanbyte, Fired With No Warning

An image shows the Fanbyte logo on an orange background.

Image: Fanbyte

Today the layoffs hit the respected gaming and entertainment website Fanbyte, with the site’s editor and media manager among the list of employees who are now out of work. According Fanbyte employees, the layoffs came as a complete shock, with some reporting that they had just worked with some of the laid off staff an hour before the sudden layoffs.

The layoffs at Fanbyte is the latest bad news from what has been a horrible week in gaming media, like Future and G4TV also suffered layoffs.

Around 12:45 p.m. AND, the first indications of something amiss appeared on Twitter. Around this time, John Warrenthe site’s media manager, confirmed that he had been fired from the site and Danielle Riendeau, the site’s EIC, confirmed that she had been released, too. Since then, several members of Fanbyte announced that the company had let them go. Others are waiting to find out if they will still have a job tomorrow.

Kotaku talked to some Fanbyte staff about the layoffs and was told that to this day, no one really knows how widespread they are. Several employees explained that management contacted staff members one by one to tell them the news. As of 2:05 p.m. ET, at least half a dozen employees had publicly announced they or they no longer had a job. Based on conversations with Fanbyte employees, it is likely that this number will increase.

Fanbyte launched in 2018, although it existed before that in a different form known as Zam. The combined Zam site and network are a wholly owned subsidiary of Tencent Holdings Limitedalias Tencent, alias this very large Chinese conglomerate who continues to buy various studios, publishers, etc..

Since its launch in 2018, Fanbyte has strived to create interesting and unique content, including fantastic coverage of professional wrestling and ongoing coverage of popular MMOs and other live games.

Update 9/15/2022 Thursday 2:47 PM ET: Fixed two job titles.

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