After nearly a week of stumbling, bumbling and just falling on their faces, Gamespot made an effort to get in front of the bullet train of negativity hurtling towards the company since last Friday when staffer of 11 years Jeff Gerstmann
was let go under mysterious circumstances. Some longtime employees used company podcast The Hotspot
to try to dampen rumors that the firing had something to do with pressure from Eidos after Gerstmann's negative review of Kane and Lynch: Dead Men.
"I'd be one of the first people to set my hair on fire and run out the front door ... if that was the case," says executive producer Ryan MacDonald. "If that was the case that it was just that one game, and one company calling and some kind of advertorial pressure." MacDonald goes on to admit that he took down Gerstmann's video review of Kane and Lynch
, not because of pressure from advertisers but because "the quality was not what [they] do."
Even as they defended they company, the hosts made it clear that they didn't approve of the events surrounding the firing. "Everybody recognizes that this was handled insanely poorly. Nobody in this company feel like this went down the right way," says host Vincent Caravella.
At the end of the half-hour or so devoted to the issue, we are (unsurprisingly) left without a clear answer as to why Gerstmann was let go. And Caravella makes it clear that we likely shouldn't expect one. "We're not staying quiet because we have to, mostly. We're staying quiet to show this company the respect it deserves. There's legal stuff, but it's more than that."