Coding help forum Stack Overflow is laying off 28 percent of its staff as it struggles toward profitability. CEO Prashanth Chandrasekar announced today that the company is “significantly reducing the size of our go-to-market organization,” as well as “supporting teams” and other groups.
After the team doubled its employee base last year, Chandrasekar told The Verge’s Nilay Patel in an interview that about 45 percent of those hires were for its go-to-market sales team, which he said was “obviously the largest team.” We’ve reached out to Stack Overflow to find out what other teams may have been affected.
Word of the layoffs comes over a year after the company made a big hiring push, doubling its size to over 500 people. Stack Overflow did not elaborate on the reasons for the layoff, but its hiring push began near the start of a generative AI boom that has stuffed chatbots into every corner of the tech industry, including coding. That presents clear challenges for a personal coding help forum, as developers get comfortable with AI coding assistance and the very tools that do that are blended into products they use.
AI-generated coding answers have also posed problems for the company over the past year. The company issued a temporary ban on users generating answers with the help of an AI chatbot in December last year, but its alleged under-enforcement led to a months-long strike among moderators that was resolved in August; the ban is still in place today. Stack Overflow also announced it would start charging AI companies to train on its site.