Following its shutdown of Casey Neistat’s Beme venture, CNN reportedly has additional cuts in the works within various digital departments.
Vanity Fair reports that CNN will lay off as many as 50 digital staffers this week, with cuts coming from its CNN Money, video, product, tech, and social publishing teams. At the same time, other digital initiatives are being scaled back, including the company’s virtual reality productions, Snapchat efforts (it cancelled a daily series called The Update in December after four months), and its MoneyStream app. The teams that work on digital extensions for Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown, Lisa Ling’s This Is Life, and Brooke Baldwin’s American Woman are also being reorganized.
“In order to innovate, grow and experiment, we’ve added more than 200 jobs in the past 18 months,” a CNN spokesperson told Vanity Fair. “Not every new project has paid off, so we will stop some activities in order to reallocate those resources and enable future experimentation. Organizations that do not make big bets and continuously evolve are the ones that fail.”
Given that it has earned the ire of President Trump, CNN has become a key point of discussion in AT&T’s proposed $85 billion takeover of parent company Time Warner. The deal is facing an antitrust lawsuit from the Department of Justice, and a trial is set for March 19.
The layoffs arrive at a moment of reckoning for other media giants within the digital realm, like BuzzFeed and Vice. BuzzFeed, for instance, announced 100 layoffs last November amid missed revenue goals.