The 850 layoffs at Viacom today—including hundreds at MTV—are claiming the livelihoods of tons of hardworking people who did their jobs well without ever receiving fame and fortune. And just like when a jumbo jet crashes with hundreds of souls aboard, the first question is: "Were any celebrities involved?" You know you were thinking that, you heartless swine. Well (according to an unconfirmed rumor from an inside tipster), your third-favorite MTV correspondent-for-life, John Norris, was laid off today. After the jump, we've got other reports from the Viacom scene.

Is it true, John? Email us if you know more. This would be quite a blow for, ah, journalism—how many people have interviewed both Mariah Carey and Hans Blix?

We've gotten these other harrowing reports from the trenches as well (new reports added to the top):

  • "Its bad at Vh1 on Hudson Street. Dozens let go. Security guys on each floor "observing". Lots of staff across the board gone, some that have been here for many years. The mood is bleak."
  • "Awkward day here at MTVN. I'm a humble Production Assistant for Nickelodeon, and we just found out all we low level staff are okay for the time being. The layoffs on our floor were pretty dramatic: an entire department laid off, and our senior vice president, and a department head at N@N. Looks to be more of a management/higher-up bloodbath from here. And Nickelodeon is one of the few brands actually making money..."
  • "I work at 1515 Broadway (the Viacom building) and in the elevators, the newstory about the 850 layoffs keeps coming up on the captivate tvs. Pretty classy..."
  • "So far at least 5 people have been let go from Mostly producers and associate producers who were supposed to be creating original content. Well, they haven't been producing anything for awhile and the writing was on the wall."

At least we'll always have this Conor Oberst interview. To remember the good times.