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Netscape staff wait to see who’s for the chop

AOL started off offering an extra month’s pay to get them to stay – so much for loyalty

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It's an unpleasant time for Netscape employees as they wait for leading Internet company, AOL, to decide exactly where the axe is to fall and which jobs will be slashed. Reports from the US suggest that as many as one in five jobs could go as AOL -- which completed its acquisition of Netscape last week -- cuts costs and embarks on a series of structural changes at the once pioneering Net company. It is also rumoured that AOL may use this as an opportunity to wave the axe around making cuts to its own management and internal structure. Rachel O'Neil, a spokeswoman for AOL UK, refused to comment on the speculation insisting it was a matter for the US. Unfortunately, no one was available for comment this afternoon and Jim Whitney, AOL's media spokesman who is responsible for handling such high profile enquiries, failed to return calls before this article was published. If true, the job cuts will come as an acute embarrassment to the company that only recently offered every Netscape employee an extra month's wages just to stay with the company until the deal was confirmed. Now it seems that as many as 500 people could lose their jobs. ®

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