BuzzFeed News Is Shutting Down Amid Layoffs

BuzzFeed News is shutting down, with the company laying off some 15% of its workforce, citing a combination of factors....
BuzzFeed News Is Shutting Down Amid Layoffs
Written by Staff
  • BuzzFeed News is shutting down, with the company laying off some 15% of its workforce, citing a combination of factors.

    BuzzFeed made a name for itself as an entertainment and pop culture news site before eventually gaining a reputation as a serious news source. The company even purchased HuffPost before eventually laying off a portion of its staff and shuttering HuffPost Canada.

    The company is now shutting down BuzzFeed News, laying off 15% of its workforce. New York Times reporter Ben Mullin broke the story on Twitter:

    CEO Jonah Peretti sent a memo to company staff outlining the decision:

    Hi all,

    I am writing to announce some difficult news. We are reducing our workforce by approximately 15% today across our Business, Content, Tech and Admin teams, and beginning the process of closing BuzzFeed News. Additionally, we are proposing headcount reductions in some international markets.

    Peretti says he overinvested in BuzzFeed News because of how much he loves the work it does.

    Additionally, I made the decision to overinvest in BuzzFeed News because I love their work and mission so much. 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.

    Moving forward, the company will continue to focus on its core BuzzFeed content, as well as the HuffPost brand, which Peretti says is profitable, with a loyal audience.

    Peretti also took responsibility for the decision, despite the variety of external factors that contributed:

    We’ve faced more challenges than I can count in the past few years: a pandemic, a fading SPAC market that yielded less capital, a tech recession, a tough economy, a declining stock market, a decelerating digital advertising market and ongoing audience and platform shifts. Dealing with all of these obstacles at once is part of why we’ve needed to make the difficult decisions to eliminate more jobs and reduce spending.

    But I also want to be clear: I could have managed these changes better as the CEO of this company and our leadership team could have performed better despite these circumstances. Our job is to adapt, change, improve, and perform despite the challenges in the world. We can and will do better.

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