MSFT layoffs Pt. 2: Windows Live/Live Search largely unaffected; MSN Direct cut

By Kip Kniskern | Posted May 6, 2009 6 comments

Yesterday marked the second round of layoffs at Microsoft, as some 3,000 employees found themselves among the ranks of the unemployed.  We’ve been trying to piece together some more detailed information about what was cut, and as usual Mini-Microsoft has been a good if not entirely reliable source of information.  While we’ve done our best to piece together information from across the web, there isn’t much official confirmation of who or what was cut, so we can’t verify the accuracy of what has been reported.

Hardest hit in this new round of layoffs, according to an email from Kevin Turner (and reported by Mary Jo Foley), were SMSG (Sales, Marketing, Service Group), and MSIT, and most of the layoffs, some 1200, came out of Redmond and Washington State.  Outsiders weren’t spared, however: Microsoft India took a big hit, as did offices in Ireland and the UK.  The entire Madison, Wisconsin office was closed, if you can believe some of the comments on Mini-Microsoft’s “Cinco-de-Fire-O” post.

A couple of notable cuts include the entire editorial staffs of MSDN Magazine and Tech-Net magazine (which we were able to corroborate), although it’s not clear if the magazines themselves survived.  Also cut were some projects coming out of the Small Business Accelerator program, including MSN Direct (yes it still existed), Response Point (a VoIP for small business program), and the .Net Micro Framework.  It’s unclear from this little bit of information what it will all mean for the existing programs and their support.

Apparently largely unaffected were Windows, Office, Windows Live, and Live Search, although there were some significant cuts in Microsoft Advertising, including some, well, massive cuts at Massive, the inline game advertising platform Microsoft purchased in 2006.

As we were the last time, we were personally affected in this round, and sorry to hear that some of our LiveSide friends are no longer with the company.  Best of luck to everyone that received bad news yesterday, and all the best in the future. 

Posted May 6th, 2009 at 6:51 pm
Category: News
Tags: Corporate Strategy, layoffs
  • Mephiles

    How come people in LiveSide were fired too? Gosh, the economic downturn really needs to end soon.

  • JohnCz

    Are you suggesting that MS ResponsePoint has been dropped entirely or just that they had some layoffs on those teams?

  • JohnCz

    You have to wonder if the cuts in MSN and Advertising staff is at all influenced by a potential deal with Yahoo.

  • vedichymn

    Ugh, I really did like the content coming out of Technet magazine too, I hope it’s not dead.

    Does MSN direct closures impact existing GPS units and such that have the MSN direct receivers?

  • JohnCz

    Here is abit of an update according to CNET report. The key point is that MS is scaling back–but not totally eliminating–several products.

    ResponsePoint: “We will also continue to promote the product online and spotlight compatible 3rd party services and add-on products,” Microsoft said in a statement. “The team is evaluating the strategy for the next version of the product and will continue to investigate the opportunity in the small business market.”

    MSN Direct: “While the group was impacted by yesterday’s job eliminations, they will continue to maintain the current MSN Direct service and invest in developing a low cost receiver for multiple devices,” Microsoft said.

    .Net Micro Framework: Microsoft said it will make the project a community source effort.

  • Quikboy

    Out of those 3 things, I hope MSN Direct stays alive. It’s really handy, and it has a lot of potential.