Life beyond cat videos: BuzzFeed needs change

Photo%3A+mediaite.com

Photo: mediaite.com

Felix Geyzer

BuzzFeed, a media source for both real news and entertainment content, has sparked popularity among its younger audience for posting outlandish stories and creative quizzes.

However, this growing digital news network has recently announced that it will cut approximately 220 staff members among the 1,300 and above it once had, according to The New York Times.

Since the beginning of 2019, there have been approximately 2,100 job cuts from digital news networks such as Yahoo and VICE News, as stated in The Guardian.

This is stimulated from the inability of such news networks to find funding or profit for the company.

BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti stated that the layoffs are meant to be part of a larger-scale effort to “put us on a firm foundation and allow us to invest and grow sustainably for years to come,” according to CNN.

In other words, there was no true source of income for BuzzFeed, as its only of funding was from advertisements. Peretti further went on to say that BuzzFeed’s business grew by “double digits” in the past year, but “unfortunately, revenue growth by itself isn’t enough to be successful in the long run.”

The world of news is changing, and BuzzFeed is just one of many to suffer. Journalism requires many employees and extensive research to be accurate, especially for those companies that go along the digital route.

However, another issue stems from the high cost of adjusting to the likings of millennials, which BuzzFeed tries to do often.

Forbes said that millennials “are the generation always asking for a new title, promotion and responsibility.” Millennials are beginning to take responsibility in determining what is actually newsworthy.

There is a much larger need for attention to stories that are newsworthy, rather than something generic and nonsensical.

The age of quizzes and pop articles has further died down, which impacts BuzzFeed’s popularity tremendously. Thus, the company is unable to always sustain audiences’ needs.

Political coverage has been crucial to journalism of all kinds recently, and smaller news outlets are losing their edge to big-time newspapers such as The Washington Post and The New York Times. We don’t need less journalism, but rather a new approach within digital news companies.

This new approach has to be one that invests more in news that matters. Much of the population no longer cares for witty challenges and funny videos, because the new generation is now shifting to become more conscious of the world around them.

It’s time for BuzzFeed to step up its game before it gets lost in the past with the cinnamon challenge.