Buzzfeed shutters news division, leans into AI


In its first quarter financial call, the digital media company BuzzFeed revealed significant declines in revenue and hinted at upcoming changes in the near future. 

According to an official press release from the company, the media outlet is down 27% in its Q1 revenue compared with 2022. Additionally, both advertising and content revenue declined by at least 30%.

Buzzfeed founder and CEO Jonah Peretti said to address these shortfalls, the company will need to “adapt,” which will include integrating artificial intelligence (AI).

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“By leaning into Creators and AI, I believe we can unlock new opportunities across our portfolio of trusted brands…”

The statement comes after BuzzFeed shut down its news division and laid off 180 staff toward the end of April. At the time, a spokesperson from BuzzFeed said none of the jobs were being replaced by AI, though Peretti commented that AI would become “part of our core business.”

Cointelegraph reached out to BuzzFeed for further comment on integrating AI into its content strategy.

Although BuzzFeed says AI is not taking over any jobs, other companies cannot say the same. Earlier in May, the CEO of technology firm IMB said that around 7,800 jobs at the company could be replaced by AI within years.

On May 9, the fast food restaurant Wendy’s announced it will be trialing an AI chatbot drive-thru operator it calls “FreshAI.” The bot is said to reduce costs so funds can be allocated elsewhere.

Companies may see AI as enhancing cost efficiency by cutting back on roles. However, a study by Accenture revealed that 40% of working hours across various industries are at risk of AI takeover as tools like ChatGPT advance.

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