media deathwatch

Condé Nast Layoffs Reach GQ, Vanity Fair [Updated]

In the past few weeks, the McKinsey-ordered cutbacks at remaining Condé Nast magazines seemed to have focused mostly on the business side. This week, the company honed in on editorial.

Monday was layoff day at Glamour, Wired, Lucky, and Tuesday, the black cloud came to Bon Appétit and Details; Wednesday, Architectural Digest reportedly lost several staffers and, we hear, Allure lost executive editor Susan Kittenplan, a one-time Vanity Fair editor who has been with the company approximately forever.

Today was GQ’s day of reckoning.

At the men’s magazine, four editorial staffers from around the middle of the masthead were axed, says our source, who adds that Vanity Fair’s editorial side may have also seen a reduction in editorial today.*

Why are they dragging things out all slow and painful-like? “The whole lameness of this is that they’re letting human resources drive the schedule,” a still-employed-but-shaken source tells us. “And they said they couldn’t handle laying off everybody all at once. So every magazine has a scheduled day.”

At least tomorrow will probably be quieter. “Condé legend has it that once they laid off a guy on a Friday and he went home over the weekend and killed himself,” says our source. “So they never lay people off on Fridays anymore.”

Well, that’s comforting. We guess?

*UPDATE FRIDAY The Post’s Keith Kelly reports that Vanity Fair did indeed have “double-digit” layoffs, which “hit as high as senior editors and as low as fact checkers.” He added the editor Graydon Carter “didn’t deliver the bad news himself”—he’s rumored to be on vacation in Bermuda.
Women’s Wear Daily reports that Heather Halberstadt, a senior editor who had been at the title for about 10 years, was one of the people let go.

Condé Nast Layoffs Reach GQ, Vanity Fair [Updated]