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Target online president leaves company after website crashes

Target Corporation is hiring, but not just stockers and swipers for Black Friday: Now, they also need someone who knows how to keep Target.com from crashing.

Yesterday, Target announced that online president Steve Eastman was leaving the company. In Target's version, Eastman is off to "pursue other opportunities," though most cynics think he's getting a crack at those "opportunities" because of a couple very public, very embarrassing website problems.

Eastman seems to be falling on the sword for two total failures at Target.com. The first came last month, when the site launched the new line of Missoni apparel, and the flood of customers overwhelmed the site.

The second, less easily explained crash happened last week Thursday, when site-goers were greeted simply by Target's dog mascot and a message that said, "Woof!"

Apparently, that dog barking was something of a death rattle for Eastman's career at Target. Eastman had been with the company since 1982, and been heading up the online department since 2008, according to Bloomberg News.

Eastman's is actually the second major shake-up for the corporate structure this month, with its chief marketing officer Michael Francis leaving the company October 3. At that time, Target CEO and Gregg Steinhafel had only good things to say about Francis, whose departure was described as voluntary.

"We would like to thank Michael for his many contributions and wish him the best in his future endeavors," Steinhafel said.

Hmm. First the top marketing guy, now the website guy. These seem like pretty important jobs for a company like Target. What next?-- someone drops off the bullseye dog at the humane society in the middle of the night?

The good news for any of you ambitious entrepreneurs out there is that no one has registered the domain name for OffTarget.com.


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