This morning the editorial staff at the “deep web” news site Vocativ received bad news: They’re being laid off amid a new focus on video. The entire editorial department was axed, which is about 25 people.
Vocativ wasn’t the only one. Today HuffPost—the newly rebranded Huffington Post—also announced layoffs in the wake of parent company AOL’s merger with Yahoo, with 39 people being let go. In total, 2,100 people will be cut due to the new megamerger.
Time Inc., too, saw big cuts this week. After trying to sell itself and failing to do so, many knew layoffs were on the horizon. Yesterday, the publisher—which includes legacy brands like Time, Fortune, and Sports Illustrated—announced it would cut 300 employees.
Layoffs happen for myriad reasons. Vocativ, in particular, is trying to spin this development as a mere refocus—maybe even a good thing—quick to explain, on background, that everything is actually going really well. Things, however, are not good. The online media business is suffocating under a Facebook/Google advertising duopoly, and publishers are suffering, trying to tailor their content to the ever-changing demands of these platforms. With nearly 2,500 job cuts announced just this week, we can only brace for what we’ll learn next.