Media Insider: BuzzFeed Cuts 47 Jobs, Yahoo News Hits 1M TikTok Followers
Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round-up of media news stories from the week.
THE GUARDIAN | ADAM GABBATT
BuzzFeed lays off 47 HuffPost workers less than a month after acquisition
Less than a month after acquiring HuffPost, BuzzFeed laid off 47 of HuffPost’s US-based journalists and closed HuffPost’s Canadian operation. In a company-wide virtual meeting, BuzzFeed’s chief executive, Jonah Peretti, said the layoffs were necessary to halt two years of losses at HuffPost. Peretti also announced the company would be trimming HuffPost’s UK and Australia operations. A spokesperson from HuffPost’s union said, “We are devastated and infuriated, particularly after an exhausting year of covering a pandemic and working from home.” The union representative added, “We never got a fair shot to prove our worth.”
Related: BuzzFeed is in talks to go public via 890 5th Avenue Partners SPAC.
MEDIAPOST | RAY SCHULTZ
Hollywood.com Bans Use Of Paparazzi Photos Without Celebrity Permission
Hollywood.com announced it will no longer use unauthorized paparazzi photos of celebrities. It says it’s the first major entertainment news publisher to ban the use of paparazzi photos without the celebrity’s consent. The collective newsroom decision follows recent news stories and documentaries calling attention to the harmful impact some paparazzi have had on the lives of celebrities, specifically the emotional pain, stalking, and physical altercations. Hollywood.com also launched a #BanPaparazzi movement to encourage other media publishers to join the cause.
More entertainment media news: Entertainment Weekly Names First Female Editor In Chief.
NIEMANLAB | SARAH SCIRE
How Yahoo News reached 1 million followers on TikTok in 1 year
Yahoo News has become one of the most popular news organizations on TikTok thanks to special projects editor Julia Munslow. While teaching in Malaysia, Munslow’s students introduced her to TikTok and she saw how accessible, flexible, and fun the platform is to use. When she returned to Yahoo News, she pitched the idea of the company starting a TikTok account.
Yahoo News quickly implemented a strategy to become more mobile-forward and engage with audiences on social platforms, mainly TikTok. The outlet knew its TikTok strategy had to be more than a copy-and-paste job. It wanted to brand itself as a nonpartisan, fact-based provider of news geared toward the platform’s younger audience. The news organization used a combination of partner footage, original reporting, and tongue-in-cheek humor to deliver news. Within a year, mobile web and app users increased by 24% and the TikTok account hit 1.1 million followers.
ICYMI: New York Times’ star NBA reporter partners with Locker Room to bring live audio content to sports.
BLOOMBERG | DAVID MCLAUGHLIN AND SARA FORDEN
Tech’s War With News Outlets Flares in U.S. With New Congress Push
U.S. lawmakers introduced legislation this week that would allow news organizations to negotiate with big tech companies for payment for content. Current U.S. antitrust laws prohibit media organizations from bargaining with tech companies, which the media argues is vital to level the playing field. The proposed legislation would grant publishers a safe harbor from those restrictions, but it does not currently include a proposal for forced arbitration if deals cannot be reached.
Last month, publishers scored a major victory when Australia passed a similar law and they hope the U.S. will be next. Ken Buck, a member of the House antitrust committee, said, “Local journalism plays such an important role in keeping the American people informed, but many of our community newspapers have been crushed by the threat of big tech. This bipartisan bill will send a lifeline to local news organizations struggling to survive because Google and Facebook have decimated the news industry.”
Continue reading news from Bloomberg: CNN and New York Times team up to produce a documentary series on Rupert Murdoch.
THE HILL | THOMAS MOORE
Washington Post to start reopening newsroom in July
The Washington Post announced it will start reopening its newsroom in July. Publisher Fred Ryan told staff around 10% of the workforce will start returning to the office on July 6, with everyone else gradually returning as safety permits. The goal is to have all employees back in the office by the fall. However, Ryan acknowledged the process will be complicated and circumstances could easily change. Ryan also added, “We will expect those who return to our offices have received their full doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.”
Read Next: Teen Vogue staff members raised concerns over decade-old racist tweets by their new editor in chief.
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Erin Wade is a Senior Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She is also an animal lover and aspiring world traveler. Tune into her insights as a social curator at @TotalCSR.