Mashable fires staff in major shift to video content

08/04/2016

Mashable has axed an unspecified number of its staff, as the digital news site embarks on a video content drive.

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The site will scrap coverage of world news and politics, laying off the entire politics team.

According to Politico and a Mashable editor, 30 people were laid off.

However, the company has so far declined to give more official information about the number of staffers let go.

Instead of world and political news, Mashable will instead focus on technology, web culture, science, social media, entertainment, business and lifestyle.

Mashable had hired NPR's Juana Summers as its first politics editor last summer.

"We are certain this is the right direction for Mashable. But that doesn't make it any less difficult to say goodbye to our friends and teammates," Mashable CEO Pete Cashmore wrote in a memo posted on LinkedIn.

Chief content officer Jim Roberts and CRO Seth Rogin are among those leaving the company. Both joined Mashable from The New York Times in 2013.

"Jim has been instrumental in building Mashable into a truly global media brand," wrote Cashmore. "He has built an editorial team that stands for trust, credibility and accuracy, allowing us to compete with some of the world's most established media companies." Rogin, meanwhile, will move to a "new venture," Cashmore wrote.

The move appears to have taken some of its staff by suprise:

Mashable's move mimicks a common trends in the publishing industry, with many major publications shifting their budgets to video, where ads are more lucrative.

Social media platforms are offering publishers tools like Snapchat Discover and Facebook Live with the promise of expanding their audiences. Some of these platform's, such as Facebook Live video, are reportedly paying publishers to come aboard.

The move follows Mashable's recent announcment that it had raised $15 million in a funding round led by Turner and that it would be using the money to “co-develop” content for TBS and TNT.

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