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Layoffs at the Volokh Conspiracy:
In light of all the layoff news everywhere else in the legal world, I wanted to reassure our readers that there are no layoffs presently planned here at the Volokh Conspiracy. Yes, we did lose our big client in Pajamas Media. Yes, in the current economic situation, our PPB — that is, Profits-Per-Blogger — are way down. Yes, there are some VC bloggers who use our luxurious office space and outstanding staff support and haven't written a post in months or years. (I assure you, Erik Jaffe exists!) But we're committed to giving you the same quality product in this down economy that we have given you in the boom times. And it will be all at the same low low price you have come to expect. — The Mgmt.

  UPDATE: It with regret that I announce that we are having to make reductions in our support staff. In the current economic situation, no blog can maintain the same staffing levels as before. I am therefore announcing a 50% reduction in our staff, effective immediately. Although there is no severance package, staff members who have been terminated will be sent a free Volokh Conspiracy t-shirt in the mail. Please expect 60-90 days for delivery. — The Mgmt.

  ANOTHER UPDATE: The difficult economic climate for law-blogging has led the management team to make yet another difficult decision: We are closing the Volokh Conspiracy's Washington DC blogging office. All bloggers and staff will now have to work out of their homes or coffee shops. We regret to have to make this decision, but we are confident that this move will allow us to remain among the premier law blog sites on the Internet well into the future. — The Mgmt.

  YET ANOTHER UPDATE: Effective immediately, the summer intern law blog program is suspended. — The Mgmt.
VC Lurker:
Certainly, that deserves a beer!
3.6.2009 2:41pm
Calderon:
I have it on good authority that David Bernstein, Ilya Somin, and Todd Zywicki are all cutting back on their blogging so that they can reduce their incomes below $250,000 to avoid Obama's increased marginal taxes on higher incomes. Can you confirm or deny?
3.6.2009 2:42pm
matthewccr:
Oh, but like so many places, VC would be such a better place minus three or four particular people.
3.6.2009 2:43pm
MarkField (mail):
This post is the kiss of death. It's like the General Manager announcing "100%" support for the manager. Or 110% if you're George McGovern.

Duck and cover.
3.6.2009 2:44pm
krs:
I'm with MarkField. Step 1 is management reassuring people that no layoffs are planned.
3.6.2009 2:47pm
alkali (mail):
It's the commenters who are getting cut, right? Me, and Bart de Palma, and Dilan Esper -- we're all headed for the scrap heap, aren't we?

You don't have to say anyhting. I'll pack up my things. (Sniff.)
3.6.2009 2:56pm
lucia (mail) (www):
Have you considered supplementing your blog income by selling side links to gambling sites? Or mortgage sites? Or writing sponsored blog posts? You could assign on of the bloggers the task of identifying the possible sources and blogging on the legality of various practices like selling links.
3.6.2009 2:59pm
Dave N (mail):
(I assure you, Erik Jaffe exists!)
Yes, but does Russell Korobkin? And has anyone ever seen those two together?
3.6.2009 2:59pm
Le Messurier (mail):
Typical corporate "rightsizing" announcement. The big boss (EV)is too chicken to make the announcement himself and sends his minions to do the dirty work. Makes us customers feel REAL good and valued.
3.6.2009 3:04pm
The Unbeliever:
Next thing to go will be the free sodas and fruit juice at the office mini-fridge.

Will employees still get a bobblehead of their favorite Supreme Court Justice for their 5 year anniversary?
3.6.2009 3:06pm
Nervous 3L with VC offer:
Were any first-years canned? Which blogging groups were most affected?

Is Con Op going to do the same thing?
3.6.2009 3:09pm
Crunchy Frog:

All bloggers and staff will now have to work out of their homes or coffee shops.

But they will be forbidden to wear pajamas while doing so.
3.6.2009 3:11pm
Duffy Pratt (mail):
Is this going to have any effect on the Commenter Kickback program?
3.6.2009 3:15pm
Sean O'Hara (mail) (www):
Has Eugene decided to give back his bonus yet?
3.6.2009 3:19pm
MarkField (mail):
Wait, I get it -- the VC is going John Galt on us.
3.6.2009 3:21pm
Bill McGonigle (www):
Maybe we can get some stimulus money for some VC infrastructure? Threaded comments, an RSS feed that leaves out posts with comments turned off, e-mail notifications - now's the time to put your starving programmers to work!
3.6.2009 3:22pm
Houston Lawyer:
I bet those lock-step annual raises have been postponed pending further review.
3.6.2009 3:22pm
The Unbeliever:
How much TARP money will the VC be seeking from the federal government?
3.6.2009 3:25pm
BillW:
Maybe you could avoid layoffs, if the conspirators were willing to take a 20% cut in their rates per word?
3.6.2009 3:28pm
Benjamin Davis (mail):
Please that to economy cut other .
Ben
3.6.2009 3:31pm
DiversityHire:
Certain of the conspirators may be able to make ends meet by providing freelance translation services to the new administration.
3.6.2009 3:32pm
Cactus Jack:
I assume also that the start date for first year VC bloggers has been pushed back to March 2010 and all VC offices have replaced their gourmet coffee with Flavia.
3.6.2009 3:32pm
highway61:
Sheesh, I read this on Above the Law like 4 days ago.
3.6.2009 3:33pm
Sagar:
Time to call/cash in those CDS you have been purchasing on the Collateral Blog Obligations ...

Or declare that VC is too big to fail so you can get in on the bailout action.

If nothing else, I can get you a great deal on cheap offshore labour.
3.6.2009 3:34pm
Splunge:
Well, the hell with you people then. Stupid upper management, always sacrificing the little people, the line workers, and preserving their own golden parachutes. I bet you aren't going to make any changes to the executive pay scheme and pension plan, are you?

That's it. I'm selling all my VC stock. Fortunately, even in this market, I can still get what I paid for it.
3.6.2009 3:34pm
Pyrrhus (mail) (www):
Oh... Actually disappointed about the intern program announcement.
3.6.2009 3:42pm
Blue:
I'm confident this will only affect BigLawBlog, not the rest of the legal blogging community. After all, people will always need wills and tax help.
3.6.2009 3:48pm
ChrisTS (mail):
Real life academic version:

1) Friday afternoon faculty meeting: President and Provost assure faculty that the college is doing fine and will not falter in its core task of providing an excellent udergraduate education.
2) Monday: clerical staff in President's and Provost's offices report that neither is on campus.
3) Tuesday: several Chairs who have been conducting months-long searches urge clerical staff to get in touvh with Provost as they need details for offers to their top choices.
4) Wednesday: those Chairs who spoke with clerical staff receive emails from Provost that their searches are closed.
5) Friday: rest of Chairs receive emails to the effect that 6 of 10 searches have been closed.
3.6.2009 3:57pm
guy in the veal calf office (mail) (www):
SEC. 124. UNENFORCEABILITY OF CERTAIN PROVISION AS BEING CONTRARY TO PUBLIC POLICY.

No provision in any Volokh Conspiracy lay-off, downsize or other reduction notice, or Terms of Service, between Conspiracy bloggers and this reader in effect as of the date of my choosing that requires any change in what I prefer shall be enforceable, as such provision shall be contrary to public policy.
3.6.2009 3:59pm
Oren:
Side note for Todd, please don't ask questions in your posts and then disable comments. It's sort of incongruous.
3.6.2009 3:59pm
Steven Den Beste (www):
Thank goodness the VC Lear Jet is still safe!
3.6.2009 4:13pm
Lucius Cornelius:
Lear Jet? I thought VC had a Gulfstream 550. Also, what about the Miami and NYC offices?
3.6.2009 4:19pm
Just an Observer:
Why no price reductions or rebates for the readers?
3.6.2009 4:27pm
Prof. S. (mail):
I figured the site hits would be going up. I know that I am slow today (although, unlike many law firms, have been really busy lately). I can confidently state that the number of hits I have personally generated has grown exponentially.

If I am typical, then you guys should be doing great. I also suspect that business has never been better for ATL, even surpassing the great NYC to 190k! fiasco.
3.6.2009 4:28pm
STB99 (mail):
Have you considered trying to get VC qualified as a bank?
3.6.2009 4:33pm
Thales (mail) (www):
I heard that for the bloggers that remain, the bonuses are going to be through the roof!

You guys really shouldn't have leveraged yourselves to the hilt to expand into Asia and Latin America. Shameful.
3.6.2009 4:34pm
kormal:
This post and its comments are like a blog post version of a New Yorker cartoon.
3.6.2009 5:00pm
htom (mail):
There were shirts?
3.6.2009 5:01pm
Javert:
Yeah, but what about the spring break junket to Cancun?
3.6.2009 5:12pm
Matthew K:

I assume also that the start date for first year VC bloggers has been pushed back to March 2010 and all VC offices have replaced their gourmet coffee with Flavia.

Don't joke about such sensitive subjects; yesterday my office went from offering free flavia coffee and tea to charging 50 cents a cup. :-P
3.6.2009 5:26pm
Jim Hankins (mail):
Investment opportunities:
For the long run:
Medical Office Waiting Room furniture
3.6.2009 5:44pm
zippypinhead (mail):
Greeetings from Khazakstan, er, I meen Bangalore:

We of the Zippy Outsourcing and Customour Seervice Companie have solotion for Volokh Conxpiracy to ekonomic haardsheep times. We shall be glad to make bid to manage the content of the Honorabull Volokh Conxpiracy to the high stendards expectid by Volokh costomers at one-fyfth the currant costs.

At no xtra sharge, to give cumfort to Volokh costomerS, all posts shaaal be from standurd familaur American nameS like "IlyA" "sasha" and "Orin."

To enjoi the bennyfits of Zippy Outsourcing and Customour Seervice, please send Professor Kerr's bank accont numburs and sociaL SEcjrity Numburs, an we take care ov rest.
3.6.2009 6:05pm
OrinKerr:
Hilarious, ZPH.
3.6.2009 6:08pm
Nervous 3L with VC offer:
Flavia! No!
3.6.2009 6:16pm
Rain+Parade=Comment (mail):
I guess layoffs are kind of funny from the perspective of a tenured professor or a lawyer at a non-profit organization.

I can assure you that they are less humorous from the perspective of a lawyer in a for-profit business.
3.6.2009 6:26pm
New Pseudonym:
Now that my subscription to the paper version has been terminated, I was happy to get a free six month extension of the on-line version, but I can't figure out where to enter my password.
3.6.2009 6:33pm
Desiderius:
And here I thought the VC worked for us...
3.6.2009 6:37pm
Wilpert Archibald Gobsmacked (mail):
This means the annual VC charity pro-am golf tournament has been canceled, doesn't it? I've already booked on PriceLine, dag-na-bit, and can't get a refund.
3.6.2009 9:19pm
LM (mail):
Until things pick up, Orin will blog on the Third Amendment.
3.6.2009 11:02pm
Ventrue Capital (mail) (www):
I was planning to go to law school in order to cash in on the lucrative market for legal bloggers. Now I'm discouraged. I might have to just practice law instead. :-[
3.7.2009 1:04am
TokyoTom (mail):
Orin, if VC is missing out on all of the bailouts, then it deserves to feel the sting of the market.

However, if you`re interested, maybe we can come to terms on introductions to friends who I can cut you in on some of the vital blogging action in support of the stimulus and re-regulatory effort ....
3.7.2009 12:46pm
asegg:
This post is in poor taste.
3.7.2009 3:39pm
ChrisTS (mail):
asegg: This post is in poor taste.

Therefore, the VC should receive no bailout monies.
3.9.2009 11:13pm

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