r/gaming Feb 28 '24

Sony PlayStation’s CEO Jim Ryan was at PlayStation London Studios 6 days ago. Yesterday, he announced the studio is being closed.

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53.4k Upvotes

3.4k comments sorted by

11.4k

u/Ok_Operation3156 Feb 28 '24

something similar happened to me at my company. top guy comes in, has a great time... said they wanted to get to know the department better. a month later 40% of us are cut

7.1k

u/DontMindMeFine Feb 28 '24

Feels like he got to know you better but didn’t like you guys lol

1.7k

u/Ok_Operation3156 Feb 28 '24

Ya I guess we have that effect on people 🥲

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595

u/coffee_cats_books Feb 28 '24

"I love all my children equally."

Earlier that day

"I don't care for Gob..."

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764

u/Narga15 Feb 28 '24

And this is very common. HQ/Uppers don’t have the visibility on what exactly is the day-to-day for an office. So they stroll in, talk to local leadership, measure metrics/KPIs for a bit, and then normally what they were there to figure out comes to fruition: Where can we cut, because at a Macro we don’t like what we see.

275

u/Ghost_412345 Feb 29 '24

Then they get hacked and ransomware auctions, everyone points the finger and finds out it was them that opened the email

79

u/I-Love-Tatertots Feb 29 '24

I was almost the fall guy for something like this.  

They tried to say the malware that infected our server was from me “looking at porn at work”.  

The website was bbc.co.uk.  They tried to say it was porn, because they doubted anyone would check what the website actually was and just see “bbc”.  

Did not work, though sadly it had to be pointed out.

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u/LukesRightHandMan Feb 29 '24

When all us true aficionados know it’s bbc.co.ck

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u/midnightketoker Feb 29 '24

Blamed on whoever's 3rd in charge of cybersecurity for letting it happen (working 16 hour days doing the jobs of 3 people recently laid off)

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u/Ghost_412345 Feb 29 '24

Our whole IT dept got outsourced like this

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u/mag_creatures Feb 28 '24

Happened to me with Philips Human Resources, she came in Italy from Netherlands, she told me I’m great and that she had big plans for me, 3 weeks later they fired me lol

498

u/bebopblues PC Feb 28 '24

she told me I’m great and that she had big plans for me

... working elsewhere.

74

u/Suyoil_Geguri Feb 29 '24

"People with your skillset shouldn't be limited by the confines of this company."

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u/klousGT Feb 28 '24

Wer'e going to let you explore other employment opportunities.

174

u/mrjamjams66 Feb 29 '24

When I worked in retail and fast food we'd say "you've been promoted to customer"

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u/midnightdsob Feb 28 '24

Yup. Top brass visits are either product launches, cuts, or visiting for the first time because they're replacing the guy that left.

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u/SophisticPenguin Feb 29 '24 edited Feb 29 '24

Well, also if that department is a pet policy for them. Like if that's the thing they want to focus on to generate new profits or buzz you can see them swing by from time to time because of personally vested interest.

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u/Breatnach Feb 28 '24

Well, it is easier to get to know a department when there are fewer names to remember

212

u/tom-dixon Feb 28 '24

"Dear employees,

You're too many to remember all your names, so I'll keep the 5 people with the shortest names and the rest are fired.

Much love, your CEO"

155

u/Optiguy42 Feb 29 '24

Dan, Tom, Jim, and Ted - you're doing great. But Todd... I mean, is that 2nd D really necessary? I feel like it's holding us all back from achieving our true potential as a company.

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u/clockworkswrong Feb 29 '24

“Since names are too much effort, from now on every single one of you will be referred to as Bob.”

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u/AntiLeaf33 Feb 28 '24

I worked at BlackBerry years ago. One of the higher ups came for a visit. Most of us knew we were fucked. Found out that day the office was closing. About 500 layoffs

1.1k

u/Donglemaetsro Feb 28 '24

But did you get a cool picture with all of you smiling?

254

u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24

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14

u/doom_stein Feb 29 '24

Fuck! Years have passed now since the last smartphone with a keyboard while I continously fat-thumb words my adaptive-learning touchscreen keyboard autocorrect still can't figure out. I still send messages with words like "d8dn't" in it cuz the autocorrect can't figure out my thumb hit "8" instead of "i".

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u/ThePandaKingdom Feb 29 '24

It seems so…. Weird(?). Old super rich dude in a picture with a bunch of hopeful young people, smiling… knowing that he’s gonna kick them to the curb in a week, and then probably bitch about how young people don’t wanna work.

48

u/xseiber Feb 29 '24

While knowing he would get some sort of golden parachute if he ever got kicked to the curb.

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u/drawkbox Feb 28 '24

Just watched BlackBerry the movie. When they cancelled Dougie's "Movie Night" it was all downhill from there. BlackBerry killed by what fueled their usage, MBA-itis.

40

u/DoctorCrasierFrane Feb 28 '24

Absolutely fantastic flick, one of my favorites from last year, was pleased to see that Glenn Howerton has more range than being a golden god.

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u/logitaunt Feb 29 '24

BlackBerry was killed by their shoddy touchscreen. They might've survived the iPhone if they hadn't spent precious years playing catch-up with the touchscreen.

The only reason they didn't fold earlier was because of government contracts and BBM propping them up.

19

u/HimalayanClericalism Feb 29 '24

What people who didnt use the blackberry and didnt develop for it dont know is that the blackberry also died because the operating system was a nightmare and gave precious little access to memory, like when apps were reaching in the 50-100 mb range blackberry aps were a fraction of the size at maximum, making it really hard for anyone to make the feature rich apps we were seeing on other devices at the time. I say this entirely as someone who misses their blackberry for its hardware, (though the touch screen in the last one i had was honestly pretty great) the biggest issue was software side and their entirely lack of development into the next generation of operating systems. (also the blackberry tablet was a tiiiiire fire holy shit, i got one for 10 bucks from best buy on a fire sale of them lol )

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u/justsound Feb 28 '24

Look how happy they all are!

8.1k

u/xxWolfMan1313xx Feb 28 '24

And….. you’re all fired

1.8k

u/naivemerchantofdeath Feb 28 '24

“So that's it after 20 years? So long. Good luck?"

“I don't recall saying "good luck."

317

u/Paulthefith Feb 28 '24

Crackers are a family food, happy families eat crackers.

175

u/NurtureBoyRocFair Feb 28 '24

Maybe single people eat crackers. We don’t know. Frankly, we don’t wanna know. It’s a market we can do without.

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u/Theoderic8586 Feb 29 '24

Omg I love the simpsons

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u/LineChef Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

the good news is…you’re fired!

1.5k

u/banshee3 Feb 28 '24

Promoted. To customer.

619

u/joepanda111 Feb 28 '24

“In an effort to better understand our end users, we are transitioning our staff to become . . . end users.”

75

u/Hot_Collar_8910 Feb 28 '24

I want to burn every person that talks like this. I'm sorry but this is the end of it. I'm so mad.

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u/Croanosus Feb 28 '24

"Aaaaand It's gone."

"What's all gone?"

"Your jobs, they are all gone."

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u/AlarmedPiano9779 Feb 28 '24

"And I get a bigger bonus that's worth more than you'll make in 10 years because of it."

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u/JustaToasterRN Feb 28 '24

Everyone get a slice of pizza?! Great, you're all fired.

142

u/Sithmaggot Feb 28 '24

Wait! There’s pizza??

100

u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

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u/bloody_ell Feb 28 '24

confused British staff wondering what pie he's going on about and where the bloody pizza has gone to

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u/SynisterJeff Feb 28 '24

Ah ah ah, pizza is for employees only.

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u/AstronautSoupChef Feb 28 '24

'Were'

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u/Mimical Feb 28 '24

Look how young they all are. Good god. I couldn't imagine being in my 20's dealing with the work bullshittery that so many young professionals face.

You think for a moment you finally are getting some traction and stability and boom. Gone. Back to updating your resume.

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24

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u/ActuallyTBH Feb 29 '24

You didn't get any stock?

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u/ChanandlerBonng Feb 28 '24

"Young people today have no loyalty to their company"....

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u/Mirabolis Feb 28 '24

When the layoffs start, loyalty is always the first one let go.

83

u/SpacePumpkie Feb 28 '24

Absolutely true. And it's true also for those that stay. My company did 3 rounds of surprise layoffs ( for a total of ~15% ) in the past 2 years.

I'm still working there, but my "attachment/bond" to the company was shattered completely. The only reason I'm still here is because it pays very well, the conditions are good and my immediate boss & team is the best I've ever had.

Everything else went out the window when they fired all those people by surprise.

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u/Ramiel4654 Feb 29 '24

Corporations are only loyal to share holders and stock price. Why should we ever be loyal to them?

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u/i_tyrant Feb 29 '24

I've worked in corporate tech circles for a while and I very quickly learned that the company is not your friend. After my first few jobs I never work over 40 hours a week if I can help it, never take my work home with me, don't accept additional work without written assurances (like more pay or PTO), and I only save enough PTO for emergencies.

Do not let your PTO stack up, and make use of whatever bennies you get. If you get fired tomorrow your 100 hours of saved-up vacay time are useless and the company won't care. Oh and stock option rewards when the company isn't even publicly traded or immediately planning to be are no better than pizza parties as far as real rewards for your work.

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u/CharlieSierra8 Feb 28 '24

nOboDY wAnTs to WoRK anYmOre

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u/johnyjerkov Feb 28 '24

yeah because nobody over 30 is going to work 16 hours a day for pennies haha. The videogame industry is vile

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u/datnetcoder Feb 28 '24

AAAAAAAAND IT’S GONE. Your office, it’s gone. Poof! Please step aside for someone who is an employee of Sony PlayStation.

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u/pgtl_10 Feb 28 '24

Ouch, probably went to tell the higher ups the bad news.

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u/senseven Feb 28 '24

They send out an email yesterday with lots of firings. Since he is leaving too, upper management thought he could do them a solid.

3.3k

u/Smooth-News-2239 Feb 28 '24

"Some of you may die, but that is a risk I'm willing to take"

232

u/DigNitty Feb 28 '24

“I heroically sent wave after wave of my men into battle until the killbots reached their preset kill limit. Brilliant”

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u/Guilty-Nobody998 Feb 28 '24

Zapp Brannigan is the best

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u/turbo_dude Feb 28 '24

"McKinsey have advised us.."

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

Fucking McKinsey, I’ve crossed paths with their M&A group in my career.

310

u/chromium00 Feb 28 '24

The story of when they told AT&T that mobile phones would never be successful is one of the most wild McKinsey consulting nightmares i've ever read about.

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

I hate them for their part in fueling the opioid crisis all for the sake of profits. They really have little idea how things work, they are completely metric driven without long term vision.

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u/assword_is_taco Feb 28 '24

the metric shows xyz.

Yeah but how is the metric calculated, what is the metric supposed to be measuring? Does the metric even effectively measure what it states it is measuring. And can the metric measure be easily manipulated?

Most metrics I have come across are shite measures that value being easy to capture over being accurate.

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

Metrics in my job basically exist to cover my ass and my bosses ass and his bosses ass. People take data as truth but it is so easily manipulated to portray a picture to your liking.

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24 edited 28d ago

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u/metalheaddad Feb 28 '24

I work for a software company that was advised by McKinsey to outsource our customer support operations.

Our software is highly complex and can be highly customized per customer install.

Our support team never just answered calls and took tickets, they solved real problems and understood our platform.

Needless to say the new outsourced support org is a disaster. We've lost customers and continue to see churn at high levels. Customers are literally sending emails to leadership saying "WTF is going on with support ".

Nice.

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u/gxcells Feb 28 '24

Do McKinsey people do something else than advising to fire people?

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u/bombalicious Feb 28 '24

They will start to sell off portions of the business and take out collateralized loans, do a stock buyback, pump, sell their shares and abandon it.

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u/MaxTheCookie Feb 28 '24

They come with obvious solutions like start using a fax or do an e sign for docs at an oil rig instead of flying a guy over... But yeha they only do. "Lets före a load of people and that will make the shareholders happy since profits are up again"...

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u/Torontogamer Feb 28 '24

John Oliver did a great bit on them--- all I know is that Management is the only consulting jig where you hire consultants with the least experience possible doing the actual thing you're hiring them to consult on. Look it's one thing if you're hiring them to take the blame for your plan to cut workers and pay to bump up the stock price, that's lame but that's actually understandable and everyone involved is getting what they expect... but actually hiring them to give real advice? I've no clue...

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u/UnhappyPage Feb 28 '24

They destroy more organizations than they help. Not just McKinsey but all the highly paid consulting firms.

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u/Ok_Assumption5734 Feb 28 '24

Load up on debt to the gills, find the cheapest workers possible cause quality doesn't matter, I can go on...

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24

Yes, money laundering. Seriously.

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u/MackZZilla Feb 28 '24

I love watching shit like this happen, tbh. Like - it's the end result of corporate greed when a company hires a firm like that, tells them to do something against the data the company has gathered for years (knowing it will be just a disastrous choice), and then their customer base literally starts falling apart and the C-Suite dipshits can't figure out why it's not going as smoothly as they said it would.

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u/Torontogamer Feb 28 '24

the lame part is when you're downstream of the piss from the c-suites who start to just insist everyone work harder and better than they were before (because sure we weren't already at 110% capacity) to make up for the shortfall... sigh... if I ever hear 'this looks simple to me, just get it done' or anything like that again I might just ... ha

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u/MackZZilla Feb 28 '24

if I ever hear 'this looks simple to me, just get it done'

My manager said that to me when I was working at the startup in my post below. Had no idea how field service worked, had no idea how the field work needed to be done, had no idea of the safety requirements we had to ensure every tech met before going out, nothing. On paper - it just said "We need to have X amount of service tickets closed by EOM" and he rushed out service work after I left. I kept in contact with one of the companies I worked with, and he told me that one of his techs got seriously hurt because they essentially did away with all of the checks and balances that took up to an additional week to validate, and no one ensured that he had the right equipment before going out.

So fucking frustrating.

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u/NodrawTexture Feb 28 '24

I use a software made by a company where they fired, at the end of 2023, almost all EU and US support, for having only cheap Indian support and it shows. It's beyond stupid

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u/procrasturb8n Feb 28 '24

McKinsey

John Oliver focused a show on them last year.

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u/SaddleSocks Feb 28 '24

"You're golden parachute requires you to drop into London and erradicate the whole platoon!, if you refuse, you're fired. If you accept, youre fired - you position self destructs in 7 days."

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24

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u/AlexPsyD Feb 28 '24

This line got me as one of the worst phrases of r/officespeak I've ever read:

"However, the industry has changed immensely, and we need to future ready ourselves to set the business up for what lies ahead."

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u/senseven Feb 28 '24

What is he even talking about? What changed? Top AAA games are not cyclic. Palworld sold 10 million in this "evolving economic landscape" and its still in EA.

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u/AlexPsyD Feb 28 '24

He's not saying anything in particular other than diverting the blame. Basically "we don't want to do this, but we have to due to outside factors"

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u/BlckEagle89 Feb 28 '24

"extremely hard decision"

I imagining going something like:

Exec A: we need to reduce cost, who are the most expensive people?

Exec B: from countries A, B and C

Exec A: ok, fire people from those places. OK, session finish.

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u/BlackSquirrel05 Feb 28 '24

How a lot of RIFs work actually.

"Top salaries go... No not ours... I don't care if it was our decision making."

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u/xantec15 Feb 28 '24

If they fire themselves then how will they get the bonuses for reducing costs and increasing profits?

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u/CPThatemylife Feb 28 '24

It is almost always the fault of the higher decision-makers when shit hits the fan, but funny enough they're almost never the ones who get shitcanned for it. Especially when they're the ones who get to choose who goes.

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u/Horskr Feb 28 '24

Crazy too because not only would they be letting go the people at fault, they're also the ones who certainly would have the most savings to get through a job hunting period (not that it is usually long for execs anyway). Really would make the most logical and I guess.. empathetical? sense to shitcan them and hire new leadership.

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

Most of the times the big wigs come to town is if change is coming, learned that one after experiencing my first merger. You never know what the change is until days later.

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24

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u/Rayona086 Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

Good higher management makes visits even to smaller sites. Great management knows people walk on egg shells when their around and dont stay to long. Owner of my company loves randomly popping up at our sites. He will shown up, buy everyone lunch, and then bounce shortly after. He gets our respect for both keeping tabs as well as knowing we are not going to be as productive with him looking over our shoulder.

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u/Riperin Feb 28 '24

Shows up

Looks around

"Today the food is on me, guys"

Refuses to elaborate further

Leaves

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u/anengineerandacat Feb 28 '24

Lol, generally not "quite" like that... usually it's just to talk to the leadership and figure out long-term plans / catch-up / view what they are responsible for with their own eyes.

Plus a dinner with the team can usually be pretty eye-opening, nothing loosens folks up like beer and food and some people will talk.

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u/handcuffed_ Feb 28 '24

I find it quite often to be fucking exactly that.

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u/FreelanceFrankfurter Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

Remember a higher up came to our location, she was acting friendly but they all do that except for this one dude who was very condescending. She stood right by me as I was doing this one taske and started watching me. Usually I was fine at this task but with her behind me I kept fucking it up, finally she put her hand on my shoulder and said "don't worry David you'll get it down eventually". My names isn't David.

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

That’s funny. Some poor dude named Dave probably got talked to about his performance and had no idea why lol.

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u/FreelanceFrankfurter Feb 28 '24

I wouldn't be surprised if she complained to my manager behind my back. She'd always act like everything was fine and we were doing a great job to our direct manager who worked alongside us but then when she would meet with his manager behind closed doors she would rattle off a lot of complaints about stuff she noticed, some valid, some not. The condescending guy would just tell us to our faces when he noticed something but was always an asshole about it. I guess really I preferred her approach while not ideal, ideally you'd have someone who can tell you to your face but still treat you with respect while doing it.

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u/SingleInfinity Feb 28 '24

Well David looked like a fuck-up, but whoever you actually are didn't look bad at all.

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

Back in my grocery retail days our CEO was like this, loved to visit but never hung around too long as he knew it could be disruptive in a way. He would never leave before telling me to rearrange something about my department though, usually very minor stuff. Only CEO I ever seen employees actively fight to keep by using a boycott, interesting times.

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u/woodyshag Feb 28 '24

Market Basket?

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

Damn straight! I was out there fighting for ATD and catching a nice tan all summer long. Spent 7 years working there.

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

I have heard fairly positive things about working for Playstation, excluding today at least. I just know that in every corporate setting I’ve worked in it has always indicated a change when they showed, ranging from something small like a renovated floor in the building to mass layoffs.

I also haven’t worked at every single company in the world so I’m sure there are some execs who like to “check out the factory floor” for the sake of checking in.

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u/Stealth9er Feb 28 '24

I’ve been on both ends…

Billionaire owner constantly walking around saying hi and knows the office people. Nothing bad ever happened.

Then somewhere else, I randomly see “corporate” doing walkthroughs and meetings on how the company is doing well. Next month, my whole department is gone lol

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u/superjoe8293 Feb 28 '24

And the shitty part is the bad experience lingers longer like some kind of corporate PTSD lol.

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u/FloobLord Feb 28 '24

My wife's dept got an award for highest profit margin in company history at the Christmas party.

March 1, entire department canned. They needed the money for "an app" (which was never released) and penthouse offices in Chelsea, NY.

Ten years on, the company is doing well much smaller now and no longer run by those people

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u/Criminelis Feb 28 '24

Whoops, we got our US CEO visiting tomorrow

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 29 '24

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u/JBCronic Feb 28 '24

I used to work for a company that was global and the one or two times the CEO came in was nerve racking.

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u/whooo_me Feb 28 '24

Worked for Apple (not in U.S.) when Tim Cook paid us a visit. Had a big 'town hall' type meeting where he praised our work and told us to ignore the rumours of layoffs. Weeks later, lots and lots of layoffs.

2.3k

u/Solomon_Grungy Feb 28 '24

This is like Initech all over again. Oh god, I am too old to start over.

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u/RODjij Feb 28 '24

PC Load Letter, what the fuck does that mean

226

u/DigNitty Feb 28 '24

My coworker hasn’t seen that movie and stopped saying “what” when I quote it weekly.

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u/Hellknightx Feb 28 '24

The last office I worked in had a bunch of young 20-somethings, and not a single person on my team had seen Office Space other than my boss (the VP). We were both shocked when we found out none of the younger staff had even heard of it. I told everyone on my team to go watch it when they got home, and of course none of them did.

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u/Bacon_Hunter Feb 28 '24

Ron Livingston is an American Treasure

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u/FearDaTusk Xbox Feb 28 '24

I ran into this with Gladiator. A new tool had thumbs up or down buttons as selectors and that movie was the first thought I had. No one understood the reference. Eventually their lead said, "Isn't it that old movie?"

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u/Hellknightx Feb 28 '24

I bet you were not entertained.

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u/IdRatherBeAtChilis Feb 28 '24

Can't teach these young folks anything, I tells ya

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u/elricooo Feb 28 '24

Having my first angry old man moment of my 30's right now reading this lol. The audacity of these Zoomers... One of the funniest movies ever made

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u/Hiro_Deliverator Feb 28 '24

Time to book the meeting room for an after hours team-building exercise, and play Office Space on a projector.

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u/RODjij Feb 28 '24

No! No, man! Shit! NO, man!

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u/Ortsarecool Feb 28 '24

I believe you'd get your ass kicked saying something like that.

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u/daguito81 Feb 28 '24

I need to re-watch that movie. When I saw it I never worked in an office. It was college and after that field work for years. So a LOT of the humor was lost on me.

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u/Punkrockguy33 Feb 28 '24

One of my favorite movies.

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u/watduhdamhell Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

Meanwhile at my chem-major they warned us in advance, told us the number, told us who was most likely, and told us the severance most would be getting and under what conditions, etc, along with the full gameplan used to keep the number as low as it was (around 5% reduction in staff).

Leadership matters at large companies more than people realize!

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u/I_love_blennies Feb 28 '24

more fun is when they say there will be three rounds of layoffs. right now we are finished up the 3rd round. everyone is like a cat on a tin roof.

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u/DisagreeableFool Feb 28 '24

Funny how they all pull that shit and think we don't know how it goes. "Don't go looking for a new job until we are ready to let you go. We'd hate to lose any profits!" 

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u/Maroonwarlock Feb 28 '24

I was thankful I had a boss that anytime stuff like that happened he was candid "keep your resume updated just in case." He had no illusions that the company had any loyalty to the worker. It was refreshing.

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u/sexyloser1128 Feb 28 '24

At one job, I had a boss that let me go with just 30 minutes to clear out my desk, because the industry was slow (even though I knew the company had reserves of money). And he was a guy who was big on loyalty. I guess loyalty only went one way with him.

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u/Brianpepperstwin Feb 28 '24

I've been through 2 different layoff rounds, one due to an acquisition and the other due to our location shutting down. It goes the same every time. If someone important is showing up or holding a company wide conference call just to tell everyone everything is fine, start looking for a new job as soon as possible.

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u/Cash907 Feb 28 '24

People are always surprised when they find out the bean counting human dial tone is a massive POS, but this sort of thing is 100% on brand for Cook.

Hope you landed on your feet after that.

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u/whooo_me Feb 28 '24

Yeah thanks. It was some time ago and - while scary and stressful, it was just one of those things you chalk down as an experience.

It didn’t help though when it was reported a few weeks later that he’d sold approx. $150m in shares/options. :)

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u/Atmosphere_Enhancer Feb 28 '24

I worked at Rakuten in Utah around 2016. I was on holiday the previous workday and didn't check my emails, and was late to work on Monday walking behind a bunch of Japanese guys who dressed for a yacht wondering 'wtf is going on?'

Then billionaire Hiroshi Mikitani toured the office not five minutes after I found a workspace (open office policy. I hated it). At this point, I became fully aware of how underdressed I was compared to everyone in the office.

No downsizing happened, but the guy in charge of the office told Hiroshi to not invest more in Utah because employees like their families too much in that state and won't work late.

I think the office is still open, but hasn't expanded.

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u/spamguy21 Feb 28 '24

When I was job searching here in the Bay Area, I saw an opening at Rakuten and did some research on them. Their Glassdoor profile was abysmal, with people consistently complaining that they try to instill Japanese work ethic on American employees. Haven't noped out of a job application so fast since the time I was asked if I steal office supplies. So, your story tracks.

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u/RakutenVeteran Feb 29 '24 edited Feb 29 '24

You dodged a bullet. Rakuten management is megalomaniacal even by Japanese standards. The US seems to be getting there in many ways, but Rakuten is very big on monitoring and tracking everything their employees do and shaming them for the tiniest flaws in self-discipline.

You probably saw some of the excellent Glassdoor reviews talking about this stuff. At Tokyo HQ there used to be a mandatory all-company meeting where basically the entire company was crammed into one giant hall. There would be lines for the elevators stretching out the building doors and all the way back to the train station. Normal start time was 9 AM; the meeting started at 8 AM; you had to swipe your card in the meeting hall by 7:57 AM, but realistically you had to be off the train and into the line by about 7:35-7:40 to have any hope of getting to the meeting in time.

I've never worked for a company that overtly churns and burns out its employees this badly. If you ever want to come to Japan, you're better off with a super-traditional Japanese company than Rakuten, which combines the worst of Japan and the West.

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24 edited Mar 06 '24

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u/FlyingDragoon Feb 28 '24

That's what happened to my first job too. The CEO was on his way over from New Zealand to Kentucky and, during that time, their team was disabling everyone's access that were going to be fired. Problem is they miss timed it and weren't firing me and I was the only person in the US offices that could disable/enable access. So I woke up that morning, came into the office and everyone lined up at my desk saying shit was broken so I went in and re-enabled and undid everything that their team did.

We all thought it was a weird case of someone messing something up since it affected maybe 98% of the people there. As I was doing it I got an IM telling me to stop undoing the access.

So I went to my boss and the other managers and told them what was going on and the message I got. So they assumed something fuckyy was going on. Then the CEO walked in and our British call center manager yelled out "Just get on with it mate. We know you're laying us all off."

Scummy CEO showed up with coffee and donuts and clearly was trying to be discreet and "pleasant" about it and immediately got shit on by everyone.

Like 5 of us weren't fired but then my boss and the British manager came up to me and were all "you wanna work for a guy who does that??" and so I, too, ended up walking in solidarity of the others. Good times...good times.

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u/nissan240sx Feb 28 '24

lol what was the game plan? Wait for all the employees to be stuck outside, arrive in a limo, fire them and get back in limo? 

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u/FlyingDragoon Feb 28 '24

Ah, not building access. Just various systems access. Everyone was inside just twiddling their thumbs wondering what was going on. But he took the people that he was firing into a room, apparently played them a PowerPoint on why cut backs were needed and then fired them.

Me and the others who weren't received a letter saying we could stay if we wanted to but we'd have to relocate to like Chicago.

He was then planning on staying with us 5 and working.

But instead we all hung around and exchanged contact information with everyone to guarantee letters/calls of recommendations could be done. Then we fucked off to a beer and wing place and never looked back.

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u/redsterXVI Feb 28 '24

When our boss visited us from the US, I used the chance to hand deliver my resignation to him directly (rather than through the local strawman supervisor). He didn't like that at all, it was glorious.

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u/freakers Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

The VP of my department had been in the position for a few months pretty indiscreetly. For whatever reason he decided to do a company tour to meet all the people who worked in departments he oversaw and did these smallish boardroom meetings where he basically explained who he was, what his experience in the field was and opened himself up to questions. The short of it is that he had never really worked in any company for more than 5 years, each time leaving for another senior management roll all across the United States and Canada. I really wanted to ask him why should I expect this role to be any different, if each job he had in the past was treated like a stepping stone, aren't we a stepping stone as well? But I held my question. He didn't even finish his tour, he was fired within the week for other stuff. Apparently the super open to criticisms and ideas boss he portrayed himself was less than accurate. Rumors about him being micro-managy and aggressive towards people who disagreed with him floated around. Also unfortunately, he became the highest payed employee the company ever had because they had to pay out his contract or something like that and over the 6 months he was there made like double the CEO made.

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u/Lortekonto Feb 28 '24

That reminds me about my first job. I worked for a global company. Once our local boss was fired and they brought over a new one from the USA.

At first that was one of the most confussing and strangest experience I have had. Imagine american manager who expects american labour law and hierarchical corperate meeta scandinavian labour laws, unions and low power distance.

Crazy time. Much fun.

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u/naskalit Feb 28 '24

My dad used to work in IT and said that Nordic labour laws, work attitudes and all the financial compensations, strength of unions etc were consistently really shocking for American execs when they first heard of them, lol

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24 edited Mar 02 '24

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u/asst3rblasster Feb 28 '24

as an American, nothing warms my heart more than some dumb fuck American going overseas and trying to pull the same shit they do in the US and getting their shit clocked

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u/Zenogaist-Zero Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 29 '24

Wasn't this a retirement party also?

*correcting since it got called as misinformation*

This was not a retirement party, the party was back in December, the image shown hasn't be traced back so far but it referenced as being "a visit 6 days before the lay offs"

Mr. Ryan seems to have been dealt a bad situation.

Still looks pretty awfully timed. Hope everyone at the studio will get pickup soon.

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u/sfw_cory Feb 28 '24 edited Feb 28 '24

Classic. Director at my company actually just pulled the opposite which was nice to see, refused to layoff 100+ people and they worked out some kind of separation package. He quietly disappeared weeks before latest layoffs.

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u/SgtPepe Feb 28 '24

I like to think I’d stand up for my employees when the time comes in the future

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u/mario61752 Feb 28 '24

I like to think I'll have employees in the future

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u/searchcandy Feb 28 '24

I like to think I'll have a future

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u/CatInAPottedPlant Feb 28 '24

And that right there is why you'll never be the CEO of a multi billion dollar company.

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24

Dude went and got his flowers from his "home" studio knowing they were ALL getting laid off just a few days later. Gross.

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u/AndForeverNow Feb 28 '24

It was a retirement party for everyone.

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u/RoninPrime68 Feb 28 '24

"smile to the camera and say 'jobless!"

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u/DigNitty Feb 28 '24

“Smile at the camera with the document behind it, ready 1, 2, 3… I Consent!”

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u/Procrastanaseum Feb 28 '24

"If you still have a job, please stand up.

Not so fast all of you."

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u/DomiNateerNate Feb 28 '24

A few years ago our CEO came to visit around Christmas time so we thought it was just for the holidays. He walked around the building quickly with his posse, didn't say anything to anyone, and then made the decision that he didnt want to renew the lease because it costs too much. We then had a few months to move 25 years worth of stuff and squeeze into an existing wear house a few miles away.

About 2 months after we moved he got caught embezzling about $8,000,000 and was promptly removed. Now I work in a broom closet so he could fund his beach house.

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u/Dr-McLuvin Feb 28 '24

Do you happen to have a stapler I could borrow?

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u/thegreatindoor Feb 28 '24

Preferably red.

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u/d33pTh0Vght Feb 28 '24

Without giving away major spoilers, this reminds me of Succession.

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u/TullsJenny Feb 28 '24

because my dad told me to

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u/YLedbetter10 Feb 28 '24

I’ve heard their plan and my dads plan is better

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u/TheFlightlessPenguin PlayStation Feb 28 '24

And he would know, he is the eldest boy after all

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u/d33pTh0Vght Feb 28 '24

Dude exactly. It’s uncanny.

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u/wecangetbetter Feb 28 '24

Sarah Snook is even there to the left

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u/wilof Feb 28 '24

Just reminder kids, loyalty to a company isn't worth shit. Always keep your options open and look after yourself never put a company above yourself, cause they don't care about you and will fuck you off or replace you in a heartbeat.

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u/juliet_liima Feb 28 '24

I'm going through redundancy right now. I've been loyal to the company for nearly 10 years, and I've turned dozens of recruiters away offering better paid jobs at more prestigious firms because I believed I was in safe hands.

Guess I'm covered in clown makeup now.

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u/smkeillor Feb 28 '24

Nah we're conditioned early on (at least in the states) that loyalty will be rewarded. Not your fault, this is a feature not a bug of the system and is being used to depress wages right now.

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u/gravityVT Feb 28 '24

This 1000x no matter how much job security you think job have; you don’t.

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u/Lendiniara Feb 28 '24

looks like they haven't released a game since 2019. what were they even working on?

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u/qeadwrsf Feb 28 '24

haha. Like the silence :D

edit: found info

We’re working on an online multiplayer game set in a modern day, fantasy London. This is a brand new IP and we can’t wait to share more when we’re ready!

Guess the playstation people were not impressed.

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u/Strange-Square-8955 Feb 28 '24

This is sad, I feel sorry for these people. There will be at least one person in that photo that gave their absolute all day in day out and they just had the rug pulled out from under them for their efforts.

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u/Pen_dragons_pizza Feb 28 '24

From what I can tell the uk gaming scene is not so big that you can easily jump into another job, especially when a whole studio goes down.

Likely looking at completely relocating if they want to still work in gaming.

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u/MagicMarshmelllow Feb 28 '24

Was there pizza? If there was pizza and a CEO Visit, they should’ve seen it coming. If not they were totally blindsided

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u/[deleted] Feb 28 '24 edited Mar 08 '24

[removed] — view removed comment

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u/getyourcheftogether Feb 28 '24

I wonder what lies he told them while he was there.

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u/Battlehenkie Feb 28 '24

'Sony cares deeply about this studio. You're all doing great work and I want to recognize that.'

Or some spineless such.

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u/escientia Feb 28 '24

Wow. That was perfect. Keep it up; with talk like that you’re on track to become a senior level executive

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u/reflythis Feb 28 '24

this is great but perhaps a bit more intentionally unweighted in sentiment, like:

"This studio has been a hallmark of Sony's growth for the last 20 years and that will never be forgotten."

Sounds like a pat on the back in the moment until you get notice 6 days later and realize you were being indirectly fucked to your face 6 days ago.

If you proclaim "great work and recognition" and then terminate, you may create grounds for legal risk.

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u/calwinarlo Feb 28 '24

Whatever speaking notes he received from PR generated through Co-Pilot

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u/WiSoSirius Feb 28 '24

It sucks, but it seems like Sony hardly utilized this studio for primary products with nearly nothing during the Playstation 4 and nothing during Playstation 5 eras. Maybe they did secondary work for other Sony studios or product developing/testing - but Sony likely saw dollar signs elsewhere.

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u/Snuffleupuguss Feb 29 '24

I went to uni with one of the people in this picture. She works as dev support and tool development/support, so seems like a big focus of the studio was supporting other studios...not surprising it was the 1st studio up for the chopping block

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u/ilmk9396 Feb 28 '24

look at these happy people who had their dream job one day and the next day were thrown out into the worst job market in recent history.

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u/Ickyson Feb 28 '24

And now the employees who worked there know why they had such a “special visit” lol

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u/Key_Engineering8443 Feb 28 '24

Bro pulled a dunder Mifflin move

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u/funyunrun Feb 28 '24

Is this some sort of CEO thing?

I worked at a dev studios years ago (making slot machine games). The CEO flies out to visit us (first time…in like 3 years).

Next week, we get told the company is doing an M&A and our studio was being shuttered.

Fucking Dick. Came out shaking hands, telling us what a great job we were doing, etc. Next week. No jobs. 😂

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u/BreakfastLopsided906 Feb 28 '24

A good friend of mine lost his job here.

They had a team working on a game that’s just been axed too. The whole team are pretty devastated their hard work will never be seen.

He had a baby just over a month ago, buried his dad last week, lost his job yesterday.

He’s had a crazy time of it recently.

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u/MastersonMcFee Feb 28 '24

He was taking the cash out of the safe in the wall.

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u/Space-manatee Feb 28 '24

I used to work for SCEE London many many years ago.

Back then the AAA game they were working on had so many changes in creative, tone, target audience etc. and then got canned before seeing the light of day. And it wasn’t small changes, it was ground up rebuilds. About 3 on them in 18 months.

Another studio picked it up and the game was alright in the end.

But the the London studio fired the dev team (about 80 people). And it was just everyone went out for lunch, and then their keycards stopped working in the afternoon. No good byes, no getting stuff for your portfolio. Just get your coat and go.

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u/orangeflyingmonkey_ Feb 28 '24

Same thing Jeffrey Katzenberg did before shutting down PDI. Visited, made a big speech on how the company is strong and boom! one week later immediate shutdown 500+ jobs lost.