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February 15, 2024

News media job cuts 2024 tracked: Year starts with at least 980 redundancies

Big losses at likes of The Messenger, Los Angeles Times, Sports Illustrated and Mediahuis Ireland start 2024.

By Charlotte Tobitt

Last year was a brutal year for the journalism industry, with at least 8,000 job cuts made in the UK, US and Canada according to Press Gazette’s analysis.

The biggest job losses were planned at Canada’s Bell Media and CBC, Reach in the UK, and News Corp internationally.

But in 2024 so far the tide has yet to slow, with hundreds affected by closures and rounds of redundancies in January alone at a range of publication types in the UK, Ireland, US and Canada.

Press Gazette’s conservative calculations put the media industry’s losses at more than 980 by the end of January. This compares to around 983 journalism job cuts in January last year.

Most were in the US, which tends to make redundancies with more immediate effect, although Pink News in the UK and Mediahuis Ireland were also planning cuts.

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News start-up The Messenger, Sports Illustrated and music website Pitchfork all effectively closed, as did Centaur Media’s Design Week.

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Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times cut 20% of its newsroom and Mediahuis Ireland wants to cut 10% of jobs through voluntary redundancies.

Press Gazette will keep this page updated, with the latest additions at the top, as the definitive guide to job announced media job cuts made throughout 2024.

The list excludes any job cuts announced in 2023, which featured in our round-up of last year’s redundancies.

We will also add any significant hiring rounds to this page.

Journalism job cuts in 2024: Up-to-date list

February 2024

Now This – Unknown number

US-based social media news publisher Now This made redundancies on 15 February, although the total is not yet known.

The journalists laid off included Mike Madden, who led the Now This Tiktok team, senior writer PJ Evans, and senior producer Jasmine Amjad.

The Intercept – 15 people

US investigative non-profit The Intercept, which was co-founded by Glenn Greenwald, laid off 15 people on 15 February. Editor-in-chief Roger Hodge left in the changes.

A memo to staff said it was “facing significant financial challenges” like other media outlets and needs to make changes to become sustainable.

It said: “With the board’s approval, the leadership team has a plan that we believe paves the way for a more sustainable financial foundation for The Intercept so that we can continue to produce high-quality investigative journalism.

“We have also implemented other cost-saving measures, including significant salary cuts for the leadership team and the flattening of the management team, to minimise the impact as much as possible.”

CBS News – Around 20 people

Around 20 people have been laid off at CBS News in Washington DC, New York and Los Angeles as part of wider cutbacks at parent company Paramount Global affecting 800 people.

The CBS News staffers made redundant reportedly include chief national affairs and justice correspondent Jeff Pegues and senior investigative correspondent Catherine Herridge.

Bustle Digital Group – 16 people

Adweek has reported that seven editorial staff at Bustle Digital Group title Fatherly have been laid off and that the site will “significantly decrease” its output.

Adweek also revealed that nine full-time employees across the Bustle, Romper and Elite Daily brands were let go in January but this had not previously been reported.

Wall Street Journal – Around 20 people

Sixteen reporters and one columnist were let go in a shake-up of the Wall Street Journal’s Washington DC coverage on 1 February, according to the Daily Beast. An unspecified number of editors are also thought to have been affected.

Editor-in-chief Emma Tucker told staff: “The new Washington bureau will focus on politics, policy, defense, law, intelligence and national security. Damian Paletta, our new Washington coverage chief, starts next week and will focus our efforts in these areas to deliver work that serves the readers and stands out from the competition.

“This means the Business team in Washington is closing as is the Washington-based U.S.-China team. Stories covered by these groups will be driven by various teams in the newsroom. We are also changing the editing structure in the bureau and are closing the D.C. News Desk; those editing functions will be handled elsewhere in the bureau or on the news desk in New York.”

Journalism job cuts in January 2024

The Messenger – About 300 people

Jimmy Finkelstein’s digital news start-up The Messenger abruptly closed on Wednesday 31 January, with many staff finding out from New York Times, Semafor and Axios reporting rather than management.

Editor Dan Wakeford reportedly told staff he was “not in the loop” on Slack minutes before the channel shut down.

The website was wiped less than four hours later. Staff have spoken out about being left with no severance and no health insurance.

Tech Crunch – About eight people

Tech Crunch reportedly laid off about eight people on Monday 29 January, with Adweek reporting it plans to “refocus its coverage around the investors, founders and startups of Silicon Valley”.

Tech Crunch is also winding down its paid subscription product, which first launched in 2019 and was rebranded to its current guise in 2021. It aimed to provide “advice and analysis to help startups” with interviews, newsletters, weekly coaching sessions, ad-free access to Tech Crunch, and more.

Altfi – Up to 15 people

London-based fintech news website Altfi announced on Friday 26 January it was closing down after ten years.

In a farewell note, the team told readers: “Whilst our purpose, journalism and brand following has never been in doubt, we have faced severe headwinds over the last 18 months.”

The Evening Standard reported that Altfi listed 15 members of staff on its website.

Forbes – Less than 3% of staff (which could be up to 15 people)

Forbes staff were told on Thursday 25 January – the same day as union members were on their first day of a three-day walkout over contract negotiations – that it planned to reduced staff by less than 3%.

Forbes has 500 employees worldwide, according to its website, meaning the layoffs could affect up to 15 people.

Forbes Media chief executive Mike Federle told staff: “Over the past few years, we’ve continued to find ways to diversify our business and revenue streams, and we’ve seen significant growth as a result.

“As we continue to position ourselves to fully align with our 2024 business strategy, we have had to reprioritize some resources so that our organization can meet those goals. These changes have resulted in the difficult decision to reduce staff in certain areas.”

Business Insider 8% of staff (which could be up to 70 people)

Business Insider told staff on Thursday 25 January it planned to make 8% of staff worldwide redundant.

It came less than a year after the Axel Springer-owned title, which then had a headcount of 950 worldwide, laid off 10% of staff in the US.

Chief executive Barbara Peng told staff that while Business Insider “closed out last year [2023] with a plan in place, a clear target audience and a vision”, 2024 would be about “making it happen and focusing our company”.

“Unfortunately, this also means we need to scale back in some areas of our organisation.”

Time magazine – Around 30 people

Around 30 people were laid off from Time magazine on Tuesday 23 January, including about 13, or 15%, of its union-represented editorial employees, according to CNN.

The union reported that the layoffs included the majority of staff at the publisher’s news publication for children, Time for Kids.

Time chief executive Jessica Sibley told staff: “We have worked to manage expenses in other areas of our business aggressively to minimize the impact of this decision on our employees. All of these actions have moved us considerably closer to being a profitable company, an achievement we must reach to realize Time’s full potential.

“While this was not an easy decision to make, it is the necessary step we must take in order to drive our business forward and improve our financial position as an organization.”

Pink News – Nine staff at risk

LGBTQ+ publisher Pink News put nine roles at risk of redundancy in its editorial, brand and people teams. The roles at risk include news editor, entertainment editor, weekend editor, head of brand, and marketing manager.

The UK-based publisher blamed an “unpredictable financial year… which has necessitated strategic changes to our growth priorities”. The company is leaning into video, it said.

Los Angeles Times – 115 people

The Los Angeles Times announced it was laying off at least 115 people, or more than 20% of the newsroom, on Tuesday 23 January.

The title’s owner Dr Patrick Soon-Shiong said the cuts were necessary because it could “no longer lose $30 million to $40 million a year without making progress toward building higher readership that would bring in advertising and subscriptions to sustain the organization”, the newspaper reported.

The Washington bureau, photography and sports departments and video unit were particularly hard-hit, it added.

Soon-Shiong has owned the Times for almost six years, after buying it from Tribune Publishing along with the San Diego Union-Tribune for $500m.

It came just six months after Los Angeles Times cut 74 roles in the newsroom, or about 13%.

Mediahuis Ireland – Around 50 people

Mediahuis Ireland is seeking voluntary redundancies with the aim of cutting costs by €4m annually. Compulsory redundancies could follow if there is not enough staff uptake.

The publisher of newspaper titles including the Irish Independent, Sunday World and Belfast Telegraph, as well as regionals such as The Kerryman and Wexford Times told staff on Tuesday 23 January it was seeking to reduce headcount by around 10%.

Around 549 people work for Mediahuis Ireland – 338 in journalism roles and 211 in areas like technology, HR and finance, according to the Irish Independent. Around 50 jobs are therefore expected to go, with 30 in editorial.

Chief executive Peter Vandermeersch told staff: “I am convinced that our strategy is the right one: to restructure our business to make this a leaner, more streamlined news organisation with the most efficient processes and systems possible, while continuing to produce the highest quality journalism and diversifying our revenues to build a sustainable future for our company.”

It comes less than a year after a previous round of voluntary redundancies. Its current headcount is already down by about 35% from when Mediahuis bought Irish news publisher Independent News and Media in 2019.

Sports Illustrated – Most, if not all, staff

Most, if not all, of Sports Illustrated’s staff were laid off after the publisher’s failure to pay a licensing fee saw the licence revoked.

The exact numbers of job losses are unclear but it was a heavy hit to the 70-year-old magazine. The Sports Illustrated Union said it had been told of plans to lay off “a significant number, possibly all”, of its members, who work in editorial, on Friday 19 January. According to NPR, the union represented 82 Sports Illustrated employees, or 80% of staff.

Sports Illustrated owner Authentic Brands Group said it had ended its licensing agreement with The Arena Group, with Front Office Sports reporting this was because Arena missed a $3.75m payment three weeks earlier.

Authentic Brands Group bought Sports Illustrated’s IP for $110m in 2019 and soon began licensing it to Arena in a ten-year deal.

Union members were reportedly given 90 days’ notice, during which time there is a chance the licensing deal is resolved, but non-union members were let go with immediate effect.

Design Week – Three people

Centaur Media closed Design Week on 19 January. Three editorial roles were lost as a result.

The 38-year-old online magazine told readers that Centaur was shifting strategy to its “core audience of marketers, and focuses on training, information, and intelligence”. It had closed in print in 2011.

Pitchfork – At least 12 people

Conde Nast folded the operation of music website Pitchfork into men’s title GQ, with chief content officer Anna Wintour saying: “This decision was made after a careful evaluation of Pitchfork’s performance and what we believe is the best path forward for the brand so that our coverage of music can continue to thrive within the company.”

Pitchfork editor-in-chief Puja Patel left the company as a result on Tuesday 17 January, along with at least 11 other employees according to AP which reported that ten of those were journalists, leaving an editorial staff of eight.

Pitchfork, which launched in 1996, had been owned by Conde Nast since 2015.

Univision – Around 200 people

Televisa Univision cut around 200 jobs at Univision, a Hispanic network broadcaster in the US, on Wednesday 17 January.

The company said in a statement: “The evolution of the media landscape has required us to implement efficiencies and cost-cutting measures to meet existing demands and in turn, strengthen our business for the future. As a result, Televisa Univision has made the difficult decision to eliminate a small number of positions in the US across various business units.”

Cuts affected on-air personalities in news and sport as well as roles in departments like production, sports, digital, and communications.

NBC News – 50 to 100 people

Around 50 to 100 people were laid off at NBC News on Thursday 11 January, with a 60-day notice period and severance packages.

NBC News and its news channel MSNBC made a similar round of redundancies a year ago in January 2023, with about 75 people affected.

The Messenger – Around 24 people

Digital news start-up The Messenger, which was launched by former owner of The Hill Jimmy Finkelstein in May last year, cut about two dozen jobs at the start of the year.

The New York Times said it was a cost-cutting measure as a result of dwindling cash reserves, blamed on a difficult advertising market.

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Select and enter your email address Weekly insight into the big strategic issues affecting the future of the news industry. Essential reading for media leaders every Thursday. Your morning brew of news about the world of news from Press Gazette and elsewhere in the media. Sent at around 10am UK time. Our weekly does of strategic insight about the future of news media aimed at US readers. A fortnightly update from the front-line of news and advertising. Aimed at marketers and those involved in the advertising industry.
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