12/06/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

The Layoffs Will Be Blogged

SAN FRANCISCO -- During past downturns, layoffs were mostly a private affair. Big companies tended to issue vague press releases filled with jargon about "downsizing," and start-ups often gave people the pink slip without telling the world anything at all.

Not anymore. In the age of transparency, the layoff will be blogged.

Elon Musk, chief executive of the electric-car company Tesla Motors in San Carlos, Calif., said that he had no choice other than to blog about the Oct. 15 layoffs at the closely watched company -- even though some employees had not yet been told they were losing their jobs.

Valleywag, a Silicon Valley gossip blog owned by Gawker Media, had already published the news, and it was being picked up by traditional media reporters, Mr. Musk said. "We had to say something to prevent articles being written that were not accurate."

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