Layoffs at The Escapist
Defy Media shuts down Durham office; gaming website will now be based out of Seattle
The Escapist parent company Defy Media is shutting down the website's main office in Durham, North Carolina, according to senior vice president of games Alexander Macris. In conjunction with the closure, Defy has also laid off a number of employees from the site.
However, The Escapist is not being shuttered entirely. Macris said it will continue with editor-in-chief Joshua Vanderwall running the operation out of Seattle.
It's been a difficult couple of years for Defy's gaming editorial efforts. In January of 2015, the company cut staff across its portfolio of gaming websites, which at the time included GameTrailers, GameFront, and The Escapist. At the time, all of those properties were said to be "continuing to serve the gamer audience going forward." The next week, GameFront shed its entire editorial and video content staff, and just last month GameTrailers shut down after a 13-year run.
Defy Media (known as Alloy Digital prior to a merger with Break Media) acquired The Escapist in 2012.
[UPDATE]: Shortly after publication, a Defy representative responded to a request for comment, saying, "In response to your inquiry, Defy's Durham, NC office is being shut down as operations are consolidating in Los Angeles. The Escapist is continuing in operation under its current EIC, Josh Vanderwall. Alexander Macris, who oversees The Escapist as well as Addicting Games and Shockwave properties, will also remain with the company."
We have asked for further clarification about whether the operation will now be based in LA or Seattle.