(Montreal) HuffPost Quebec and HuffPost Canada retired Tuesday. 23 workers were affected across the country, including five in Quebec.
HuffPost Quebec has already hired dozens of people, but some have since left, and the positions have not been filled. So they were a small team of five in Quebec to get all the missions done.
News of the shutdowns hitting Quebec and Canada comes at the same time that 47 Huffpost workers were announced in the US with the goal of increasing the company’s profitability.
In the fall of 2020, online news site BuzzFeed announced that it had acquired Verizon Media’s Huffpost. The deal closed in February of this year. Since autumn, a wind of uncertainty has been blowing.
Once the lockdown information began circulating, HuffPost Canada posted a brief message in both the country’s official languages on its website confirming the lockdown on March 9th.
“As of March 9th, HuffPost Quebec will no longer publish content. Current content will be kept as an online archive; however, some of the site’s features have been permanently disabled. For more global content, please visit HuffPost.com. We thank you for your support and reading.”
The news of the immediate closure, due to the “restructuring”, was announced to employees at noon Tuesday. HuffPost’s deficit of $ 20 million has been raised and fears that deficit will occur again this year, unless the trend changes.
Martin O’Hanlon, president of the Canadian branch of the American Communications Association (SCA), said today’s announcement – just three weeks after BuzzFeed purchased HuffPost – demonstrates that the shutdown was part of the buyback plan.
“It’s bad for the press, bad for Canada, bad for a group of great journalists who are now laid off after everything they’ve done for this company,” the head of the Securities and Commodities Authority said.
Martin O’Hanlon added: “If BuzzFeed’s CEO, Jonah Beretti, really cares about the people and the press, as he claims, he will overturn this short-sighted decision and build a better company.”
SCA applied for certification on February 23 to represent HuffPost employees in Canada after the majority of workers signed union cards.
The media has been living in a difficult financial situation for several years, especially the print media, due to declining advertising revenues.