BuzzFeed shuts down Australian operations

BuzzFeed has announced it will end its Australian news production “both for economic and strategic reasons” and is standing down its remaining staff.

May 14, 2020, updated May 14, 2020
Photo: AP/Richard Vogel

Photo: AP/Richard Vogel

The online media organisation said it would end its UK news output as well as its Australian coverage.

The website said the decision was made to cut back local news in favour of US coverage.

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

“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 spokesperson added that the company will retain some employees who cover “news with a global audience” including social and celebrity news, in addition to investigations.

BuzzFeed, which was launched in the US in 2006, attempted a major overseas expansion in recent years but subsequently made some cutbacks.

At the beginning of 2019 it had 40 staff based in Sydney and Canberra, but in January last year it cut 11 jobs, including that of its founding Australia editor, as part of trimming 200 jobs from its international operation.

-with AAP

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