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Another executive exodus from Yahoo?

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Just when it seemed like the great Yahoo exodus had finally ended, Senior Vice President Scott Moore, who oversaw Yahoo’s Santa Monica-based media group, made it official today: He’s leaving, too.

Yahoo can’t seem to catch a break. Under Moore, Yahoo’s media properties have been a bright spot in a troubled landscape, with the Olympics and the election driving record traffic. Its news, finance and sports sites are some of the largest on the Web, snaring more than 70 million unique visitors a month. And yet the dude who helped ride that wave is coasting out the door as Yahoo’s business continues to wipe out.

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It’s unclear if Moore’s departure had anything to do with the ongoing -- and seemingly endless -- talks with Time Warner online unit AOL. He will be replaced by another former Microsoft guy, Jeff Dossett. (Irony alert, given Microsoft’s role as a spurned merger partner).

Dossett will take the role of senior vice president of U.S. audience and will oversee all consumer experiences in the United States, according to a Yahoo news release. Dossett, who was executive producer and general manager for the MSN Media Network, will report to Hilary Schneider, executive vice president of Yahoo’s U.S. operations.

In 2002, Dossett took two years off to climb the highest mountain on each of the seven continents. He may find that challenge easier than turning Yahoo around.

Moore was a former Microsoft guy, too. He came to Yahoo in 2005 to work for the now departed Hollywood exec Lloyd Braun. The departure last December of Vince Broady left Moore in charge of the entire media group. Rumors of Moore’s departure have persisted for months.

Al Warms, general manager of Yahoo News, is also planning to leave and will be replaced by Yahoo’s vice president of programming and development, Neeraj Khemlani.

The defections come after those of a number of senior executives this summer, including Moore’s boss, Jeff Weiner, who now splits his time between two venture capital firms, Accel Partners and Greylock Partners.

Yahoo plans to lay off at least 10% of its workforce and restructure the company to remove layers of management before year’s end. Looks like Moore and Warms, in their final act of bleeding purple, just gave CEO Jerry Yang a hand in that difficult task.

-- Jessica Guynn


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