The media company has told a bunch of staff that their future is in jeopardy.
BuzzFeed once established a name as the kings of breaking news but also knew how to stand on peoples’ toes. Now, the media company has just announced it will be closing down its Australian news operations.
According to a statement, the decision was strategically-focused with an eye to their bigger US market. The future of local staff is in jeopardy as a result, with whom it is understood will now be eligible for JobKeeper.
“Both for economic and strategic reasons, we are going to focus on news that hits big in the United States during this difficult period,” the statement reads. “Therefore, we will notify staff in the UK and Australia that we are not planning to cover local news in those countries.”
Alongside its closure within Australia, the media company has also shut down its news operations in the UK, with only a skerrick of its staff staying on.
It had been reported that the media company was struggling financially prior to the current crisis, but it seems evident the pandemic tipped things over the edge with advertising revenue all but drying up. Australian audiences will now only be supplied global content via the publisher’s Buzz, Tasty and Video brands.
Established in 2006, BuzzFeed earned a reputation for its shrewd coverage of popular culture and crafting of listicles and quizzes. You could argue they’re godfathers of the term ‘clickbait’.
BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti announced last week that 68 employees in other divisions of the company will be furloughed to further cut costs during the COVID-19 crisis, following staff-wide pay cuts in April. We’ve been told some form of staff reductions will hit our newsroom next.
— BuzzFeed News Union ✊ (@bfnewsunion) May 12, 2020
Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories five times a week.