Sports Illustrated, the venerable bible of sports journalism, has been in decline for years, as the internet annihilated print magazines and cost-cutting turned the weekly publication into a monthly and whittled its staff. But on Friday, the magazine received perhaps its toughest blow yet.

The company that publishes Sports Illustrated said in an email to employees that it was laying off many of them, leaving in doubt what lies ahead for the publication.

The move came after the Arena Group, which publishes the magazine and website under a complicated management structure, had its license to operate the publication revoked.

Reporters and editors for Sports Illustrated were asked on Friday to attend a Zoom call at 2 p.m. Eastern time. It lasted just seven minutes. On the call, Jay Frankl, the Arena Group’s newly hired chief business transformation officer, said, “We will continue to produce the Sports Illustrated brand and online content until the situation is fully resolved,” according to a recording of the meeting heard by The New York Times. No questions were taken.


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