Plenty of gamers said they would give up on GOG.com when the company decided to fire one of its own staff members for an innocuous tweet that used the hashtag #WontBeErased. However, Social Justice Warriors wanted heads to roll for the tweet and GOG.com gave them a sacrifice back in October of 2018. Well, after the SJWs took their pound of flesh, gamers had claimed that they would be taking their business elsewhere, whether they stuck to that promise or not, times haven’t been too good for GOG.com in the last few months. According to a report from Kotaku that was published on February 26th, 2019, around a dozen people (or 10% of the staff) were laid off recently.
It’s not as simple as some staff being let go, though. Apparently GOG.com also has some open positions that they claim they are filling up in lieu of the departures.
A representative for GOG.com told Kotaku…
“Letting people go is never easy. We have been rearranging certain teams since October 2018, effecting in closing around a dozen of positions last week. At the same time, since the process started we have welcomed nearly twice as many new team members, and currently hold 20 open positions.”
Kotaku was told something slightly different from the staff that were recently let go, stating that 10% of the entire staff at GOG.com were cut.
They went on to explain that revenue intake hasn’t been as consistent as they would have liked, and after having a pretty good January, February was abysmal…
“We were told it’s a financial decision. GOG’s revenue couldn’t keep up with growth, the fact that we’re dangerously close to being in the red has come up in the past few months, and the market’s move towards higher [developer] revenue shares has, or will, affect the bottom line as well. I mean, it’s just an odd situation, like things got really desperate really fast. I know that February was a really bad month, but January on the other hand was excellent. We were in the middle of a general restructuring, moving some teams around, not unprecedented. But layoffs that big have never happened before.”
The Kotaku article makes a strange leap in logic, stating that developer revenue share may have played a part in the downturn, which makes no sense.
The Epic Games Store takes a 12% distribution cut, where-as almost every other major distributor, including GOG.com and Steam, take a 30% cut. The thing is, distribution cuts are what’s owed to a developer after a sale is made by a customer, it has nothing to do with product demand, consumer retention, or market spread.
A downturn in revenue is indicative of people no longer buying products from the storefront, which is a completely separate issue from what a developer receives off the backend.
More than anything, GOG.com should be reassessing if there was any downturn in the revenue when gamers claimed they would be boycotting the distribution outlet after GOG.com apologized multiple times to SJWs.
Unless we see what the engagement/revenue was like throughout 2018 it’s impossible to tell exactly why people stopped making purchases on GOG.com, especially in February, 2019. But obviously it has nothing to do with revenue share based on the available data.
(Thanks for the news tip Diogenes)