BuzzFeed ‘News’ is Closing Shop – Layoffs for 180 Staffers – Focus on Remaining HuffPost

Jonah Peretti, CEO and Co-Founder of Buzzfeed Inc., announced via email that BuzzFeed News is shutting down as part of a 15% overall workforce reduction. The Shutdown comes just a few months after BuzzFeed had laid off 12 percent of its staff in a cost-cutting measure.


“While layoffs are occurring across nearly every division, we’ve determined that the company can no longer continue to fund BuzzFeed News as a standalone organization,” he wrote.

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Peretti said he had overinvested in BuzzFeed News “because I love their work and mission so much.”

BuzzFeed News

“This made me slow to accept that the big platforms wouldn’t provide the distribution or financial support required to support premium, free journalism purpose-built for social media,” he wrote.

He added that he had failed to “hold the company to higher standards for profitability” to give it a buffer during downturns.

BuzzFeed Inc. will now have HuffPost, acquired in 2020, as its only news site, which Peretti said: “is profitable, with a loyal direct front page audience.”

The once Iconic BuzzFeed News began in 2012 with political reporter Ben Smith as editor-in-chief. The site prospered, garnering a Pulitzer Prize along the way.

Things started to go south in 2017 after publishing the fake, Hillary Clinton-funded Russia dossier shortly before Trump’s Inauguration and getting sued.

It has been reported that BuzzFeed lost approximately 10 million dollars last year.

BuzzFeed News has stated that all its news pieces will be preserved within the BuzzFeed network, and any stories currently working will be published and promoted.

The 180 staff being laid off will be given a chance at employment with and HuffPost in areas where the companies are interested in expanding coverage.

Peretti told the remaining staff that he would focus more of the company’s energy in the future on AI.

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“We will empower our editorial teams at all of our brands to do the very best creative work and build an interface where that work can be repacked and brought to advertisers more effectively,” he said. “And we will bring more innovation to clients in the form of creators, AI, and cultural moments that can only happen across BuzzFeed, Complex, HuffPost, Tasty, and First We Feast.”

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