I’m not usually one to talk and blog about layoff news – I don’t think it’s particularly helpful to trumpet the news every time some minor company lays off the dead weight or gets irrationally freaked out and sacks half the workforce and then blames it on the economy. It’s essentially a trend that Sequoia Capital started that had little basis in reality for tech, and it’s snowballed into a situation where everyone is afraid to do anything.
On the other hand, though, news reaches my desk today that I’m not afraid to shout from the rooftops – the MPAA is laying off as well.
Yes, the Motion Picture Association of America has laid off a lot of folks – CNet calls them “significant layoffs”:
The MPAA’s leadership is mostly unaffected, said the MPAA spokeswoman. Prior to the layoffs, Dean Garfield, one of the more high profile MPAA attorneys, left the trade group in December to become CEO of the Information Technology Industry Council, a technology-focused trade group.
Some of the members of that tech trade group include HP, Adobe, Dell, IBM, and Cisco.
In 2006, Garfield was accused in a lawsuit filed by TorrentSpy, the now defunct BitTorrent search engine, of hiring a hacker to illegally break into the company’s servers to extract confidential information. The MPAA denied the allegations and the lawsuit was later dismissed.
It is a little early to call victory on this one. The movie industry isn’t suffering from record drops in their base support due to their illegitimate practices yet – I credit this mostly to the fact that movie file-sharing still hasn’t reached the proportions that audio file-sharing has simply due to file size – but rest assured that if the MPAA is having to cut back due to “the economy,” the RIAA and the IFPI can’t be far behind.
In other words, my prediction from December 2007 may yet come true (though just a little late).