Support newspapers instead of celebrating media layoffs.

Bad news for the media often feels like good news for conservatives.

So word that Vice and BuzzFeed are laying off hundreds of journalists, weeks after the complete collapse of The Messenger, won’t elicit much sympathy from the right.

Then again, it’s not just conservatives who disapprove of the news business today: Gallup last year found a paltry 32% of Americans say they have “a great deal” or “a fair amount” of trust in the mass media.

The same survey found 29% had “not very much” trust in the media — and a record-setting 39% confessed they had “none at all.”

Last month the Los Angeles Times announced reductions of its newsroom by more than 20%.

Jeff Bezos’ Washington Post has also been through rounds of buyouts and cutbacks.

But the troubles of traditional newspapers are often taken for granted.

A decade ago, online outlets like Vice and BuzzFeed were meant to be the future of media — new species adapted for the Internet ecosystem.

That’s now the problem: Those sites and others staked their survival on algorithms they don’t control.

Vice Media plans to lay off several hundred employees and no longer publish material on its Vice.com website, the company’s CEO said in a memo to staff Thursday.
Vice Media plans to lay off several hundred employees and no longer publish material on its website. AP

First came “search engine optimization,” then gaming the algorithms that decide what content gets served to millions of Facebook and Twitter (now X) users.

BuzzFeed was notorious for “listicles,” which were addictively easy to share until Facebook became so saturated with BuzzFeed and Thought Catalog junk that Mark Zuckerberg’s platform decided to change the rules.

After all, how much clickbait could readers take?

Online media startups attracted investment by showing phenomenal growth, but it was like an athlete on steroids.

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