Earlier today we reported on the firings at OK! Magazine and at the end of that post we solicited tips on the matter. Since then, we've been flooded with information via phone and email.
First off, after communicating with a number of people with ties to the magazine, it's apparent that what went down today at OK! wasn't the result of the financial distress so common throughout the print media industry, but something born mainly out of catty jealously, distrust and hatred, specifically the jealousy, distrust and hatred publisher Lori Burgess held for lead editor Katie Caperton. Burgess didn't like Caperton, so she set out to fire her, sending most of the employees who aligned themselves with Caperton packing as well. It's as simple as that.
Frankly, the whole thing sounds like a chapter from a Lauren Weisberger or Sophie Kinsella novel. Even the name of the main character, Katie Caperton, sounds so painfully chick-litty, but whatever.
Most of the dishing from OK! Magazine employees past and present centered around Burgess. Here's a sampling...
Lori Burgess, walked each fire-ee over to human resources, pretending to feel bad as she led people to their firings. The words that came out of her mouth were textbook: restructuring. new vision. future....the whole thing seemed most unbelievable given that most of the magazine was nowhere near done.
Back at the office "it's a shit show" — meaning Lori has told the people who are left that they're on the team for now, but the chances of more people being fired is very likely. Everyone is miserable.
The poor people still there are totally confused. No one has any idea what the fuck is going on.
Look, Lori Burgess is just a hideous bitch. Just a used-up, grandmotherly whiskey person.
Lori told everyone in a meeting that Katie's job was like climbing Mount Everest and that we were all just dead weight in her backpack, weighing her down.
She goes around referring to herself and Richard Desmond as 'Blondie and Panther,' she's Blondie and he's Panther.
Lori claims to understand what needs to be done to make the magazine better, that it needs to appeal to a certain demographic, but then she goes and fires all of the very people at the magazine who best understand the demographic they're trying to appeal to, without ever really giving them much of a chance to prove themselves.
Before she fired everyone, she made us all come in for an 8am meeting, where she gave her "balls" speech. She said that we all needed to have balls at OK! Magazine, two balls specifically, and that we were all going to have to juggle them. She said anyone who wasn't prepared to juggle their balls should just leave so she could find someone else with balls who was willing to juggle them.
I guess the speech above was Lori Burgess' take on Alec Baldwin's brass balls monologue in Glengarry Glen Ross?
Jennifer's still full of enough bullshit that she won't be fired for a while. She's still sucking ass.
Wow. OK! Magazine sounds like a swell place to work these days, doesn't it?