Every single one of Tumblr's 178 employees will get money from the $1.1 billion Yahoo deal, which means that if the site hadn't let go of its three editorial team members last month, they too would have received $371,000 — each. That's the minimum Tumblr employees will receive from the deal because of stock options, according to Crain's New York. The first 30 employees will get an average of $3.3 million, and the first 10 are due an average of $6.6 million. But the edit team, which came on board in a splashy arrival last May but didn't make their presence felt enough to survive until the Yahoo deal, wouldn't have fallen into those higher brackets for a site that launched way back in 2007.
There's also a slight chance that the three editors may not have made the cut-off for stock options since their Storyboard project only launched a year ago. But CEO David Karp did hire former editor-in-chief Chris Mohney and executive editor Jessica Bennet in February of 2012, giving them more than enough time to receive the full benefits, with stocks. Maybe the timing of the firing had something to do with the deal? According to whispers about the Tumblr-Yahoo deal, talks started a "few weeks ago," which could fall right around the timeframe of the editors' April 12th firing.
In any case, it's certainly a bitter day for those former staffers fired in a horrible memo written by Mahoney, but the HR person at Tumblr is probably thrilled with his or her six figures. The very first Tumblr employee, Marco Arment, who left the company and founded Instapaper, says that his seven figures won't make him "yacht and helicopter rich," but will make his life comfortable enough. "As long as I manage investments properly and don’t spend recklessly, Tumblr has given my family a strong safety net and given me the freedom to work on whatever I want," he wrote on his blog.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.