A month ago, Vice Media announced a plan to reduce the number of text articles it publishes on Vice.com, Refinery29 and other Vice-owned sites by 40 to 50 percent as the company shifts its emphasis to video. On Thursday, Vice Media laid off more than a dozen employees, many of them writers and text editors.
Cory Haik, Vice Media’s chief digital officer, shared the news of the layoffs with the staff in an email on Thursday that was obtained by The New York Times. After noting recent successes on video, including the milestone of hitting one million TikTok subscribers for Vice Indonesia this week, Ms. Haik described larger changes at the company worldwide. “As part of this continued global alignment,” the email continued, “we’ve unfortunately had to say goodbye to some of our friends and colleagues today. We wish them well and thank them for their dedicated service over the years.”
Writers and editors for Refinery29 and Vice shared news of their terminations on Twitter. Nearly 20 full-time jobs were cut, mostly in the United States, according to a person with knowledge of the layoffs. The job cuts did not affect Vice News or Vice World News.
One former Vice staff member, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe an internal matter, said she was given a few minutes’ notice before a Google Meet call with Ms. Haik, during which she was told she had lost her job. Access to email was cut within minutes, the former staff member said.
The shift to video and the layoffs have come as Vice Media is considering deals that could take it public. Last year, Vice Media laid off 155 workers, mostly overseas, with about 55 jobs cut in the United States, in response to business pressures resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.
The real estate website The Real Deal reported on Thursday that Vice Media was planning to move its headquarters from Williamsburg, Brooklyn, to the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
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