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July 29, 2020updated 30 Jul 2020 10:20am

Buzzfeed News UK journalists: Where are they now?

By Charlotte Tobitt

Buzzfeed closed its UK news operation during the Covid-19 lockdown, leading to around ten journalists being made redundant.

It was the first major casualty of the downturn brought about by the pandemic as ad revenues plummeted. The newsbrand, which still operates in the US, cited both economic and strategic reasons for its UK closure.

But many of the former digital news website’s editorial team have since announced new roles in top UK media organisations.

Where are they now?

Editor Stuart Millar (pictured, top right) has been appointed digital news editor at the BBC and will be responsible for editorial content in news, live and social output when he starts in September.

Millar said: “I’m thrilled to be joining the excellent BBC online team to help deliver ambitious, impactful digital journalism for our existing and new audiences at this time when the need for trustworthy news has never been more acute.”

News editor Alan White has been appointed as editor-in-chief at Politics Home and its online platform The House Live and will start in a few weeks.

He tweeted that he is “excited to work with a highly talented team building a platform for original political reporting at a time when it’s very much needed”.

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Politics editor Alex Wickham (pictured, bottom left) will take over Politico’s London Playbook from Jack Blanchard in September.

The email newsletter has just passed 50,000 subscribers under Blanchard’s editorship and the team said Wickham has “”long been our No. 1 choice to take charge of Playbook when the moment came”.

Senior political correspondent and former lobby chairman Emily Ashton (pictured, bottom right) will join Bloomberg in late August to report on British politics. She said: “So excited to be part of this stellar lobby team.”

Ashton will be joined at Bloomberg by Alberto Nardelli, Buzzfeed’s former Europe editor who was one of the six journalists who stayed on the investigations team last month but is now leaving.

He will join Bloomberg in September as correspondent-at-large for Europe.

Senior reporter Emily Dugan (pictured, top left) is moving to the Sunday Times as social affairs correspondent in September and said she “can’t wait to get started”.

Media and politics reporter Joey D’Urso, who joined Buzzfeed from the BBC only weeks before lockdown began, has begun a number of projects including as an on-air contributor for Times Radio and writing for Times Red Box and the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

Buzzfeed’s US operation has laid off 50 of the 74 employees it furloughed in the spring – or 5.7% of its US staff. They include ten roles in the news division, according to Bloomberg.

It was reported that the company is trying to keep its losses for the year under £20m after losing some custom advertising and affiliate deals. Before Covid-19 it anticipated a profit of around £30m.

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