In late November, many thousands of Sun Microsystems employees got the word that effective January 4, their services will no longer be required. While the cuts were expected, the extent of the layoffs are more far-reaching than might be expected.
In addition to the usual suspects being hit in a merger — accounting, HR, sales, marketing — Sun (NASDAQ: JAVA) is also dismissing many people involved in open source projects, including people who are directly involved with MySQL and would ostensibly be needed for Oracle to keep its many promises to the European Commission.
"They have made a five-year promise to the EU and have RIF’d folks that are directly involved with the efforts," said a source familiar with the reductions who did not wish to be identified. ‘RIF’d’ is slang for "reduction in force," a nicer way to say laid off. "So I am very hesitant to believe what is being promised," the source added.
Sun has people involved in open source efforts all over the company, from support engineering and marketing to sales and research. The source estimated that up to 3,000 people alone are in those efforts.