Deadspin Sold to European Firm, Entire Staff Is Out


G/O Media has sold Deadspin to European firm Lineup Publishing, which will not being retaining any of the current staff. The Daily Beast was first to obtain a copy of an email G/O Media CEO Jim Spanfeller sent to employees informing them of the development.

“Recently we were approached by the European firm Lineup Publishing expressing interest in purchasing Deadspin to add to their growing media holdings,” Spanfeller wrote. “Lineup Publishing is a newly formed digital media company described in their words as ‘dedicated to creating, acquiring and managing high quality media brands across a variety of sectors. The memo continued: “After careful consideration, the G/O Media board of directors has decided to accept their offer. I do want to make it clear that we were not actively shopping Deadspin. The rationale behind the decision to sell included a variety of important factors that include the buyer’s editorial plans.”

Deadspin's new owners have made the decision to not carry over any of the site's existing staff and instead build a new team more in line with their editorial vision for the brand. While the new owners play to be reverential to Deadspin's unique voice, they plan to take a different content approach regarding the site's overall sports coverage. This unfortunately means that we will be parting ways with those impacted staff members, who where notified earlier today. I would like to thank them for their hard work and efforts."

Employees told The Daily Beast that the exit process was abrupt.

The move comes about four-and-a-half years after the entire Deadspin staff resigned in protest of a memorandum insisting they stick to sports and the firing of a popular editor.

It's hard to even imagine what the next version of the long-running sports and pop culture site will look like. There isn't exactly a glut of information about its new ownership floating around online, so time will tell. There are a bunch of people who already didn't recognize this version of Deadspin as sharing any DNA with the old but this news does feel like the true end of some of those echos.

Which is awful for two obvious reasons. One, because Deadspin was a true disruptor in its heyday — a far more important sports blog than the one you're reading right now and published a tremendous amount of amazing work. And secondly, it's even more people losing their jobs in the industry, which has arguably never been in a bleaker spot.