Michael Musto was fired in the latest round of layoffs at the Village Voice.
The nightlife columnist, an iconic Voice writer and the most high-profile staffer left at the paper, was fired along with longtime food critic Robert Siestema and theater critic Michael Feingold. Gawker was the first to report the layoffs.
"So many people have come out to offer their love (and opportunities)," Musto, the paper's most high-profile staffer, told the site. "I'll update you on all my new beginnings. My brand will be feistier than ever."
The cuts have reportedly left staffers "devastated," according to Gawker. Others lamented the cuts on Twitter Friday. WWD's Erik Maza called the layoffs "a disgrace," while the New York Times' Catherine Rampell said the news was "very sad."
BuzzFeed's Rosie Gray tweeted,
like i said last week, if they don't keep Musto, time to just close the paper. gawker.com/bloodbath-day-…
— Rosie Gray (@RosieGray) May 17, 2013
BuzzFeed's Doree Shafrir echoed that sentiment, writing,
Re Village Voice: The drawn-out death is wrenching. Just rip the band aid off, it'll save everyone a lot of heartache gawker.com/bloodbath-day-…
— Doree Shafrir (@doreeshafrir) May 17, 2013
The news comes a little more than a week after editors Will Bourne and Jessica Lustig chose to resign, rather than oversee a round of layoffs. They had reportedly been instructed to cut five people from a staff of 20.
The newspaper announced the "restructuring" in a statement on Friday, writing, "Voice Media Group recognizes their many achievements and honors over the years, and thanks them for their loyalty, their professionalism, and the iconic role they have played in establishing the Voice as a cultural touchstone in New York City."