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Wednesday, April 14, 2021

BuzzFeed lays off 47 HuffPost employees weeks after acquisition.

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When BuzzFeed introduced final 12 months that it might purchase HuffPost, it was anticipated that cost-cutting would observe the completion of the deal. On Tuesday, lower than a month after the acquisition went by means of, BuzzFeed laid off 47 employees at HuffPost and closed the publication’s Canadian version.

At a digital firm assembly, BuzzFeed’s chief government, Jonah Peretti, mentioned the layoffs had been meant to stem losses at HuffPost. HuffPost, which was beforehand owned by Verizon Media, misplaced greater than $20 million final 12 months and was on monitor to lose the identical quantity this 12 months, Mr. Peretti informed the workers in keeping with an account of the assembly supplied by BuzzFeed.

Workers got a password to enter the assembly — “spr!ngisH3r3,” a variation on the phrase “spring is right here.” The workers members had been then knowledgeable that if they didn’t obtain an electronic mail by 1 p.m., their jobs had been protected. The web site Defector first reported on the password and different particulars of the assembly, which had been confirmed by two individuals who attended the assembly and spoke on the situation of anonymity to explain inner discussions. A BuzzFeed spokesman informed The New York Occasions that the corporate regretted the password’s tone.

The HuffPost Union, which is affiliated with the Writers Guild of America East, mentioned in a press release that the layoffs had affected 33 of its members, practically a 3rd of the native union. “We’re devastated and infuriated, significantly after an exhausting 12 months of overlaying a pandemic and dealing from residence,” the union mentioned in a press release.

As a part of the cutbacks, BuzzFeed closed HuffPost Canada and introduced plans to lower the scale of its operations in Australia and Britain, the BuzzFeed spokesman mentioned. On the finish of the austerity measures, HuffPost would nonetheless have a bigger newsroom than BuzzFeed Information, the spokesman added.

Within the assembly, Mr. Peretti mentioned that HuffPost’s government editor, Hillary Frey, and its worldwide government editor, Louise Roug, had determined to go away the corporate. HuffPost has been with out an editor in chief since Lydia Polgreen departed a 12 months in the past to turn out to be the top of content material at Gimlet Media, a Spotify-owned podcasting firm. Mr. Peretti mentioned he anticipated to announce Ms. Polgreen’s successor within the coming weeks.

Whoever takes the job will report back to Mark Schoofs, BuzzFeed Information’s editor in chief. On the assembly, Mr. Peretti reiterated that BuzzFeed and HuffPost would stay distinct from one another, with separate editorial staffs.

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