Buzzfeed cut Australian and UK editorial teams

Buzzfeed have announced they will no longer be covering local news, signalling the end of their Australian and UK editorial teams. The company will instead focus on their US operations and a global perspective.

The website best known for its listicles, launched itself into the journalism realm as a competitor to traditional news outlets, often using a more comedic and plain-speaking tone.

The Australian team made a significant contribution to coverage of Australia’s marriage equality debate and often broke major stories that were picked up by traditional media players. The company has also focussed on reporting on refugees and the financial struggles of younger Australians.

Today the axe appeared to fall on the Australian and UK operations. There are four journalists in the Australian team lead by respected writer Lane Sainty, as well as a copy editor and sales staff, and six editorial staff in the UK team.

The company indicated that some of the UK staff would remain to cover global news, but it’s not looking positive for their Australian based staff who may be out of a job.

The company was struggling to maintain advertising revenue prior to the outbreak of coronavirus, but the COVID-19 pandemic has made their operations no longer viable.

“For economic and strategic reasons, we are going to focus on news that hits big in the United States during this difficult period,” the company said in a statement.

“Therefore, we will notify staff in the UK and Australia that we are not planning to cover local news in those countries. We will be consulting with employees on our plans regarding furloughs and stand-downs in these regions.”

The company had previously signaled it was looking to merge with other publishers, but after a raft of recent amalgamations the company was left ‘alone on the dance floor’.

OIP Staff

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