In a surprising statement released today, Blizzard has announced that 600 jobs within the company's infrastructure have been eliminated. According to the statement, 90% of those jobs were positions not directly tied to the development of the company's games.
Where, exactly, those jobs come from then is not entirely clear. Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime is quoted in the release as saying "as Blizzard and the industry have evolved we've also had to make some difficult decisions in order to address the changing needs of our company," but makes no mention of what portions of the company's infrastructure will be affected by these layoffs. In fact, the only specific mention the release makes is that the World of Warcraft team is entirely unaffected by it.
The release also mentions that Blizzard's upcoming publishing schedule won't be affected by these layoffs, which is good news for those eagerly awaiting the publisher's next Diablo III delay announcement.
Still, with such an emphasis on the fact that so few of these jobs are directly tied to development, one can't help but wonder where, precisely, these cuts are coming from. Vox Games cites a source claiming that most of it came from the company's customer service department, which seems plausible. Still, Blizzard isn't saying one way or the other.
Regardless of who specifically was affected, we wish the best of luck to all those hit by the layoffs.