Dan Primack

The latest on private equity, M&A, deals and movements — from Wall Street to Silicon Valley

AOL enters the import/export business

March 10, 2011: 1:08 PM ET

AOL Inc. (AOL) today is firing hundreds of people, after closing its $315 million acquisition of HuffingtonPost. Many of these are journalists. For example, AOL exec Jonathan Dube tweeted:

I have just laid off dozens of the most talented journalists & product folks I know. Need talent? Let me know!

In a memo detailing the moves, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong tried to soften the blow:

With the acquisition of The Huffington Post and this renewed focus on editorial creation, we have increased the number of staff dedicated to content creation to over 1200 people and remain a net importer of journalists.

That's right, AOL is a net importer of journalists. But doesn't that also mean that AOL is a gross exporter of journalists?

What a wonderful new euphemism. So  much better than firing people or terminating people or even laying them off. And don't even get me started on reducing headcount (only applicable at places where bodies are not required, like cable TV).

And I know what you're thinking: "Don't exporters require an ultimate destination?" Yes, they do. In the case of AOL, its journliats are being shipped off to a the unemployment lines (which import even more journalists than does AOL).

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About This Author
Dan Primack
Dan Primack
Senior Editor, Fortune

Dan Primack joined Fortune.com in September 2010 to cover deals and dealmakers, from Wall Street to Sand Hill Road. Previously, Dan was an editor-at-large with Thomson Reuters, where he launched both peHUB.com and the peHUB Wire email service. In a past journalistic life, Dan ran a community paper in Roxbury, Massachusetts. He currently lives just outside of Boston.

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