Layoffs Hit HuffPost After $four.6 Billion Verizon Media Write-Down

HuffPost started shedding workers Thursday morning, in the future after its mother or father firm, Verizon Media, introduced it will lower 7 p.c of its workforce.

About 750 Verizon Media workers have been anticipated to lose their jobs. That announcement got here greater than a month after Verizon took a $four.6 billion write-down on HuffPost’s mother or father firm, Oath (now known as Verizon Media), which incorporates AOL, Yahoo and HuffPost. 

HuffPost workers started receiving calendar invites to satisfy with human sources representatives Thursday morning. 

HuffPost unionized with the Writers Guild of America, East in 2017. A spokesman for the union mentioned not less than 15 members had misplaced their jobs. Some nonunion workers have been anticipated to be lower as properly, HuffPost has discovered.

“It’s a tricky day for HuffPost, and we’re dropping some proficient and beloved colleagues,” HuffPost Editor-in-Chief Lydia Polgreen mentioned Thursday. “We’re deeply dedicated to high quality journalism that displays what issues most to our numerous audiences throughout the globe. HuffPost is aligning its skills and investments to areas which have excessive viewers engagement, differentiation and are poised for development at a time when our mission means greater than ever.”

HuffPost’s union contract included language guaranteeing editorial independence and enhancing newsroom variety, and had particular provisions for severance within the occasion of layoffs.

“Quite a few good folks misplaced their jobs as a part of company-wide layoffs, regardless of Verizon taking in practically $four billion in authorities funded tax breaks final yr and a promise that staff will ‘share within the firm’s success,’” WGAE mentioned in a press release. “This is among the many the explanation why staffs working within the media business proceed to hitch collectively to combat for office protections that embrace collectively bargained severance packages and honest layoff notifications.”

Chloe Angyal, HuffPost’s deputy opinion editor, mentioned on Twitter that she and the remainder of her crew had been laid off, and that the Opinion part could be eradicated. 

Each lower within the tight-knit HuffPost newsroom represented an enormous loss for the business, mentioned Christopher Mathias, a HuffPost reporter and union member. 

“At the moment is a giant blow to our newsroom and to the world of journalism,” Mathias mentioned. “The reporters and editors who have been laid off as we speak don’t deserve this. It’s so unhappy and infuriating. They’re among the most passionate and devoted folks I do know, and their work has made actual affect on folks’s lives. They’ll be sorely, sorely missed.”

“Nobody does this job to get wealthy,” he added. “Massive tech CEOs do their jobs to get wealthy.”

It wasn’t instantly clear how many individuals from every Verizon Media-owned manufacturers could be affected.

Within the wake of the write-down in December, some information shops reported that Verizon deliberate to chop 10 p.c of Oath employees, or greater than 1,000 jobs. There had been rumors within the HuffPost newsroom of the layoffs since then.

A Verizon Media spokeswoman mentioned Wednesday that the corporate’s purpose “is to create the most effective experiences for our customers and the most effective platforms for our clients.”

“At the moment marks a strategic step towards higher execution of our plans for development and innovation into the longer term,” she mentioned.

That is the second swath of main layoffs for HuffPost’s mother or father firm. Verizon lower about 2,100 folks from the corporate in 2017. HuffPost reported on the time that 39 of these have been HuffPost union members. 

The information comes as big cuts proceed to hit organizations elsewhere within the digital media sphere.

BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti introduced Wednesday that the corporate would lay off 15 p.c of its workforce, or about 250 folks, The Wall Road Journal reported.  

Gannett, which owns USA At the moment and several other different newspapers, additionally lower jobs in newsrooms throughout the U.S. on Wednesday. laid off the vast majority of its workers in November. In October, Refinery 29 introduced a lower of 40 workers, whereas Tremendous Deluxe introduced that it will shut down.

AdWeek known as 2018 “Digital Media’s Nice Upheaval.”

This text has been up to date with information concerning the layoffs on Thursday.