Waypoint shutting down amid layoffs at Vice

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nophilip

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Real bummer to see another site get shut down, especially Waypoint. I certainly didn't consume all their content, but I love the whole Waypoint crew and will always remember stuff like Lore Reasons and the Waypoints podcast. I hope Rob, Patrick, Cado, and Ren can all find new jobs quickly.

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DrSunchips

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What? That's bogus...

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bigsocrates

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Young people just don't consume professional content. They like streamers and personalities. And there aren't enough middle aged people watching this stuff to keep it viable. Vice in general is trouble because it can't attract a young audience. The rate of change in the media landscape since the advent of the Internet has been absolutely insane. Not just for games media either.

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MobiusFun

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This super sucks. Waypoint Radio is my favorite podcast.

So uhh... If I sub to Waypoint+, do you think they'll just automatically cancel my sub in June or July? Probably not, right?

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tartyron

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@mobiusfun: One way of the other, it's Vice that would get the money, not the Waypoint team, so I'd not.

Sigh. I will greatly miss my anarcho-commie games team. I hope they can do something like nextlander, though I dunno if they have the same volume of audience and thus get a sustainable income for all involved. More likely they will hop to other publication, that will then be phased out, and so on until there isn't really much left. There are fewer and fewer places you can get a salary and medical coverage in the games press, and going into business for yourself is always a gamble, so we'll see what they do. I really hope I have a way to get my Rob Zacny's idiosyncratic stories and Patrick and Cado's mad laughter and Renata's fantastic insights. It really was one of the most intellectually stimulating podcast out there in the games space.

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ALLTheDinos

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I’m really bummed about this. I didn’t engage with all of their content, but their writing was a highly welcome anomaly in what is increasingly a barren hellscape for content. I hope the entire crew finds landing spots that fulfill them creatively to even a fraction of the extent that Waypoint did.

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tartyron

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#8  Edited By tartyron

I'll also say, they seemed to see this coming ever since Gita got laid off. Patrick and Rob have said many times in recent months how unstable the industry if for his type of job and the sense that the axe is always about to fall, and the frequency on talking about that was becoming more pronounced. I don't think they were blindsided by this, though I expect we can find out soon enough as I have no doubt this will be talked about on their podcast.

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MobiusFun

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Welp, I'm saving an extra $5 a month now. I'll need it for when the AI ruins my job too. Cancelling the waypoint+ sub was kind of funny because it still asks you why you're unsubscribing. It was hard to answer that without being rude.

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AV_Gamer

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#10  Edited By AV_Gamer

I'm not surprised by this. Sadly, Waypoint never caught on strongly over the years like other sites that covered video games did. Like someone said, these days people like Twitch and Youtube influences. The days of genuine video game journalist is slowly coming to an end. And I've been telling people this for a while now, the Patreon hook up isn't going to last for long, so people better take advantage of it while they can. It's a jungle out there right now and only the strongest... won't be replaced by A.I...

I wish that was a joke, but its not, sadly. I hope the people at Waypoint are able to land on their feet.

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CyrusRaven

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Cool everyday gets more bleak. RIP Waypoint. As always fuck capitalism go home.

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Ben_H

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@tartyron said:

I'll also say, they seemed to see this coming ever since Gita got laid off. Patrick and Rob have said many times in recent months how unstable the industry if for his type of job and the sense that the axe is always about to fall, and the frequency on talking about that was becoming more pronounced. I don't think they were blindsided by this, though I expect we can find out soon enough as I have no doubt this will be talked about on their podcast.

Yup. Literally on Friday, Patrick joked at the end of one of their streams about whether they would still have jobs on Monday. It seems like they've been expecting this for a while now, especially with the most recent news about Vice.

I'm pretty bummed about this. Waypoint had some of my favourite streams and their podcast is among the best in the business. Their Motorsport Manager streams rule.

I do hope they try the Patreon route for a podcast if they want to. If A More Civilized Age is anything to go by (which, as of right now has over 5600 patrons, which is pretty darn good), this group certainly has an audience that would support them. Increasingly, at least for me, the video game side of their podcast has been secondary to them just talking about whatever they want. I tuned in to hear about Rob's various shenanigans way more than I did to hear about new video games. They managed to pull off making Waypoint more personality-focused like Giant Bomb and it seemed to be going well for them. Stream viewership was steadily increasing the last year or so. But given they're owned by Vice, what affects Vice ends up affecting Waypoint and Vice's mismanagement has now ended killing off one of the only interesting Vice properties left.

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tartyron

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#13  Edited By tartyron

@ben_h: The thing that made me feel like I saw this coming was actually Jason and Jess getting laid off, creating the realization that the subscription model doesn't protect jobs. The overlords don't care if something is profitable, only MEGA-profitable counts to them so they shut everything else down. There doesn't seem to be any room for self-sustainability anymore, just massive success or no success at all.

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styx971

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i woke up to the news and as always it sucks , waypoint slowly became my #1 podcast to listen to over the years as changes happened here and everywhere else i visited. since the layoffs here i've been worried about waypoint tho cause i seen a rumor floating around that vice was looking for a buyer so its not shocking so much as horribly sad. that frees up some funds tho so i guess all i can say is while i don't usually say i want another patreon to start up i would be 100% willing to put that wapypoint plus money to a new start for them if they were to stay together , where else am i gonna find rob zacny's weird stove exploits and the like or hear the more 'topical' discussions around games. i know they aren't everyones cup of tea but they're mine ever since austin left n started it up and even tho hes left it for other things they were still great and brought more great ppl on , its such a damn shame.

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mellotronrules

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yeah- it feels like vice has been on life-support for a good stretch, so i can't say i'm shocked. doesn't make it less impactful for the employees though- sincerely hope everyone is able to bounce back quickly!

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dwerkmd

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If Patrick is looking for a job maybe he could just sliiiiiide right back in here.

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Gyratyne

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Damn shame. Not entirely surprising, but it still stings. I'm going to miss their absurdly long podcasts about topics I would never hear about otherwise.

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AV_Gamer

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#18  Edited By AV_Gamer

@dwerkmd: The problem with that, is like with Jason and Jess, there is no job security. Plus, Grubb is now the news man at GB and I'm sure he doesn't want the competition. Fandom made it clear, they only need one of something when it comes to this site. They got rid of Gertsmann, because they had Bakalaar, and kept Jan because.. you get the idea.

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daavpuke

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Who would have thought that a website built around people who know how to do nothing except write college level essays about nonsense wouldn’t last?

I mean, they launched in 2016. That's like forever ago, in current world standards. Several other sites came and went in that same period.

Shoutouts Carl's Jr ✨

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Efesell

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Who would have thought that a website built around people who know how to do nothing except write college level essays about nonsense wouldn’t last?

It's been 6 years, in the online media landscape.

So, you know, fuck off.

@dwerkmd said:

If Patrick is looking for a job maybe he could just sliiiiiide right back in here.

I mean this wouldn't have been a good direction when the site was way healthier, let alone now when it's more unstable than an actual Giant Bomb.

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jstaunton

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nicolenomicon

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eccentrix

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I thought this already happened.

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geirr

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Many thoughts, summed up; Fuck capitalism, go home.

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rlatham

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I always feel for anyone that loses their job. That's a tough spot to be in and I hope they all find something soon and land on their feet. They are all very talented. Waypoint was never my cup of tea. Too much social commentary in their coverage. Sometimes I just want to hear about the games and not the politics of it all the time so I fell off a long time ago. Given the state that Vice is in I'm surprised that most of these folks like Patrick with a family didn't bail out a long time ago to something more stable. I feel the same way about current Giantbomb. If the current hosts don't see the writing on the wall they are doing themselves and their families a disservice. Also I always find it funny that their mantra was "fuck capitalism" when the company they work for in it's current form was literally founded and exists because of capitalism.

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splodge

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Jesus this website has some shitty users

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AtheistPreacher

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@splodge said:

Jesus this website has some shitty users

If it's a user profile created less than an hour after the topic was started and only has the one post, does it really count as a GB user?

Best to just ignore them. Don't feed the troll, etc.

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SethMode

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@rlatham: Is the only time for people to say "fuck capitalism" while operating outside of capitalism? Seems.... counterintuitive.

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rlatham

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@sethmodeMy point is it's ironic. If you truly hate capitalism than don't participate in it or go work for a non profit or the government. I just don't understand people railing against capitalism and hate it so much yet are fine making a living off of it. Fuck capitalism isn't a mild critique of the system or saying it has issues and can be better (which is clear it can be). To each their own.:

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brian_

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#32  Edited By brian_

It really sucks. I only have so many hour in a day to support independent games media, many of whom were forced there by industry downsizing, that it'd be real fucking nice if employers of the few businesses left could do their actual jobs and keep their employees employed instead of relying on fans to make sure their business doesn't go under.

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Ydross

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Damn i was really looking forward to Cado Final Fantasy Tactic playthrough at some point this year.

The video game sites centered around personalities model is pretty much dead now. Only Giant Bomb is still hanging by a thread

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gaggle64

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That's a huge bummer, their content was impeccable.

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alistercat

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#35  Edited By alistercat
@rlatham said:

@sethmodeMy point is it's ironic. If you truly hate capitalism than don't participate in it or go work for a non profit or the government. I just don't understand people railing against capitalism and hate it so much yet are fine making a living off of it. Fuck capitalism isn't a mild critique of the system or saying it has issues and can be better (which is clear it can be). To each their own.:

youcriticisesociety-yetyouparicipateinit.jpg

Maybe you didn't already know that your argument has long been an intellectually vapid meme.

Criticisms about capitalism aren't that people shouldn't have jobs or earn money through work. Fuck Capitalism Go Home is a sentiment, not the critique itself.

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FinalDasa

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#36 FinalDasa  Moderator

The real shame is the site was sustainable, but the parent company wasn't.

Waypoint was never my wavelength for video game coverage, but I was delighted it existed. Having the usual silly discussions and more severe criticism always felt necessary. Moving away from the typical buying advice reviews was a healthy step for the industry.

Hopefully what comes from this is positive cause right now this is a big bummer.

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BisonHero

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#37 BisonHero  Online

At the risk of being too doom and gloom, it feels like in 5 years there are going to be about 2 video game websites left, both trying to out clickbait each other by writing/videoing about some inane topics with wide appeal, instead of anything even resembling good reviews or opinion pieces.

And both of the websites will constantly be on the brink of folding because some likeable 20-year-old kid on YouTube who doesn’t really know what they’re talking about has 10 times the audience of the 2 remaining websites.

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TurtleFish

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@bisonhero: Totally agree with you - and not just in the video game space. A LOT of media venues are going this way.

The problem is that it's always easier and more likeable to hear the stuff you want to hear, as opposed to hearing the stuff you NEED to hear. Though, to be fair, in the streamer space, I think a lot of people out there really are trying their best, trying to avoid conflicts of interest, trying to provide something resembling journalism, even if they've had no formal training or real self-reflection.

The big problem is all the people who don't actually know what they're doing, or are only going for clicks, or who don't give a damn about conflicts of interest. When you get on a soapbox, you immediately take on a responsibility to society, whether you recognize it or not.

RIP Waypoint - good luck to everybody involved.

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dodecalypse

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Efesell

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@rlatham: I mean… respectfully.. what the fuck?

What world are you pretending this is where you’d suggest that someone simply not participate in Capitalism, of all things, if they had a critique of it?

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Undeadpool

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Love that they existed and even supported them because I'd check out a video every now and then, but I'm surprised they lasted this long. Thankfully I think they're mostly equipped to land on their feet, and are familiar enough with the hustle.

@efesell said:

@rlatham: I mean… respectfully.. what the fuck?

What world are you pretending this is where you’d suggest that someone simply not participate in Capitalism, of all things, if they had a critique of it?

It's a bad-faith argument made by people who would rather sound correct than be right.

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timoneous

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Working for a large company is a scary thing, especially when your group is just a small fish in a large pond. Waypoint was just a piece of the larger Vice Media Group. Much like GB was a part of CBSi, which was a part of CBS, which was a part of Viacom (and similar at Whiskey Media, too). Vice has actually been looking to get bought recently, but the way the winds have been blowing in digital media, they couldn't get their asking price. I don't think Waypoint as a brand was valuable enough to sell off buy itself, so rather than forcing it in with the whole media group, they shut it down to attract buyers to the larger company.

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rlatham

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@efesell No reason to be nasty about it. Again I just find it ironic that people rail against capitalism while working for an organization built on capitalism. If you hate it that much why perpetuate it. I have many issues with capitalism but my mantra isn't "Fuck it". It's let's change the specific things about it that aren't working not throw it all away. Not sure why people are so afraid to have a nuanced conversation. Everything has to be a harsh rebuttable or namecalliing if someone offers another point of view. I don't have any ill will against any of these folks and I'm not shaking my fist at the screen over their take. I just find it funny and ironic. That's all. Nothing deeper than that. Chill folks.:

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rlatham

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@alistercat Maybe so. I don't pay attention to memes so I had no idea. I was trying to make a somewhat tongue in cheek observation. Like most things on the internet I should understand that unless your going with the flow, people take it in the worst possible way.

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Efesell

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@rlatham: Capitalism will be the death of us all, make no mistake.

Despite believing that I can't simply say "No thanks" because I also have to exist and live in actual reality. So you might imagine that I don't have a great deal of patience for a take of "Well if they hate it so much, why wouldn't they simply refuse?"

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rlatham

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@efesell Gotcha. Sorry that you feel that way. I don't really have anything more to say.:

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Ben_H

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#47  Edited By Ben_H
@finaldasa said:

The real shame is the site was sustainable, but the parent company wasn't.

This is the wildest thing about all of this. Waypoint+ was a fairly big success for them. The last couple times they did sales for it, they said they comfortably beat the goals set by management for new and renewing subscriptions. They did well enough with Waypoint+ that they were able to hire new staff and bring back Natalie part time for streams.

But none of that matters because Vice, who have been flailing around and horribly managed for years now, is desperate to get out of their current situation that they put themselves in so they're cutting everything in hopes of being bought so the people that messed it up can move on and find the next thing to ruin.

It's so similar to what has happened at so many different outlets the last few years. No matter how well a place performs, it's always at the mercy of a c-suite person that likely has no clue what's going on and just wants a number to look a certain way. As a result boneheaded decisions happen that kneecap an outlet, causing it short-term and long-term problems or eventually forcing them to shut down (See Jenna being fired from Polygon despite being the person who drove a big chunk of their Youtube views since BDG left, Motherboard firing Gita Jackson, Fanbyte being gutted to a skeleton crew with no real way forward, or Jason and Jess being laid off here despite the fact that this is a mostly video-oriented website, leaving Jan to pull double duty in hosting the main podcast and handling all video production, which is way too much for one person to reasonably handle).

edit: Rob is talking on Waypoint's stream right now about how most of the people who put Vice in the position it is currently in have jumped ship the last few months, leaving everyone else to clean up after them.

I can guarantee that none of those people learned a single thing from their mistakes. They never do.

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tartyron

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#48  Edited By tartyron
@ben_h said:

I can guarantee that none of those people learned a single thing from their mistakes. They never do.

This wasn't a mistake in their eyes. They drained the victim of blood and moved on. They accomplished their goals.

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TheodoricFriede

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...All these 'fuck capitalism' people... what exactly do you want? If the money isn't there, the money isn't there.

Are Waypoints owners obligated to keep throwing money at a website that is hemorrhaging money? Forever?

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akira333

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@rlatham: if slaves truely hate slavery why do they participate in the system? The question isn't participation or not but if one thinks they should be participating and what they are doing to end the system