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The Hollowing Out Of Vice And BuzzFeed Marks The End Of The Digital Media Revolution

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Its two leaders, Vice Media and BuzzFeed, are in a frenzy of retreat, giving up much of their internet empires to retain what remains of their fundamental assets. Having once threatened to upend the whole industry and usher in a new era of news delivery and commercialization, the former digital media darlings are now simply trying to survive in any way they can.

As they go, their vast newsrooms, previously filled with rows of journalists, turn off the lights and close their doors. BuzzFeed, which has already reduced its workforce through many layoffs, stated this week that it would cut another 16% of its workforce as part of a “planned strategic restructuring” to minimize expenses. Vice Media also said on Thursday that it will let off hundreds of employees as it transitions away from publishing on its website and towards a studio-like company.

vice

The Hollowing Out Of Vice And BuzzFeed Marks The End Of The Digital Media Revolution

“It’s devastating to have a group of reporters who have made such a significant impact on the world have their jobs end in this way,” one top Vice Media colleague told me about the unfortunate situation.

All digital publishers have experienced difficulty in recent years as a result of the industry’s tough headwinds, which include a softening advertising market under the control of Big Tech heavyweights and declining referral traffic, not to mention the impending threat of artificial intelligence that Big Tech titans have brought about.

Vice Media and BuzzFeed have served as the industry’s two most visible pioneers, paving the (short) way for additional digital-first startups. At one point, the publications instilled panic in their traditional media competitors, each valued in the billions of millions, making headline-grabbing hires and threatening additional upheaval.

They’re currently trying to keep their heads above water.

The death of Vice Media, as we know it, is particularly difficult to digest. Staffers at the outlet, who I’m told will be laid off if they lose their jobs, became aware of a problem many hours before CEO Bruce Dixon delivered his memo. Before the announcement, the tone inside Vice Media was bleak.

Staffers struggled to work amid rumours about the outlet’s destiny, with one saying it was like “the violinists playing aboard the sinking Titanic.”

Then, late in the 3 p.m. ET hour, The New York Times’ Benjamin Mullin verified their worst concerns, announcing that huge layoffs were imminent. Finally, at around 5 p.m. ET, Dixon publicly informed his staff of the terrible decision and significant changes the business would make under its new private equity owners, with support from Fortress Investment Group.

Dixon stated in his email that Vice Media had determined that it was “no longer cost-effective” for the firm to distribute its digital content independently. Instead, he claims that its two leaders, Vice Media and BuzzFeed, are in a frenzy of retreat, giving up much of their internet empires to protect what remains of their primary assets. Having once threatened to upend the whole industry and usher in a new era of news delivery and commercialization, the former digital media darlings are now simply trying to survive in any way they can.

As they go, their vast newsrooms, previously filled with rows of journalists, turn off the lights and close their doors. BuzzFeed, which has already reduced its workforce through many layoffs, stated this week that it would cut another 16% of its workforce as part of a “planned strategic restructuring” to minimize expenses. Vice Media also said on Thursday that it will let off hundreds of employees as it transitions away from publishing on its website and towards a studio-like company.

“It’s devastating to have a group of reporters who have made such a significant impact on the world have their jobs end in this way,” one top Vice Media colleague told me about the unfortunate situation.

All digital publishers have experienced difficulty in recent years as a result of the industry’s tough headwinds, which include a softening advertising market under the control of Big Tech heavyweights and declining referral traffic, not to mention the impending threat of artificial intelligence that Big Tech titans have brought about.

Vice Media and BuzzFeed have served as the industry’s two most visible pioneers, paving the (short) way for additional digital-first startups. At one point, the publications instilled panic in their traditional media competitors, each valued in the billions of millions, making headline-grabbing hires and threatening additional upheaval.

They’re currently trying to keep their heads above water.

The death of Vice Media, as we know it, is particularly difficult to digest. Staffers at the outlet, who I’m told will be laid off if they lose their jobs, became aware of a problem many hours before CEO Bruce Dixon delivered his memo. Before the announcement, the tone inside Vice Media was bleak.

Staffers struggled to work amid rumours about the outlet’s destiny, with one saying it was like “the violinists playing aboard the sinking Titanic.”

Then, late in the 3 p.m. ET hour, The New York Times’ Benjamin Mullin verified their worst concerns, announcing that huge layoffs were imminent. Finally, at around 5 p.m. ET, Dixon publicly informed his staff of the terrible decision and significant changes the business would make under its new private equity owners, with support from Fortress Investment Group.

vice

The Hollowing Out Of Vice And BuzzFeed Marks The End Of The Digital Media Revolution

Dixon stated in his email that Vice Media had determined that it was “no longer cost-effective” for the firm to distribute its digital content independently. Instead, he said, the company will “look to partner with established media companies to distribute our digital content, including news, on their global platforms, as we fully transition to a studio model.” There has yet to be a word on who these partners might be.

The business also must decide what to do with Refinery29 and Motherboard. Dixon stated Vice Media is in “advanced talks” about selling the former. I’m informed that many negotiations are taking place about what to do with Motherboard, with one option being to license the tech-focused vertical to another company that would operate it, similar to the Sports Illustrated approach.

According to what I learned Thursday, executives are still determining if the stuff the site has produced over the years will remain online.

Meanwhile, the hundreds of employees who were left wondering what would happen to them would have to wait until the weekend to find out if they were laid off. It was a nasty act. Regardless, employees in the digital publishing department have mostly accepted their destiny.

“I think most of us have seen the writing on the wall: there are simply not enough lifeboats, and it is highly unlikely that the skeleton crew of us on digital news will be invited onboard one,” the employee told me, comparing Vice Media to the sinking Titanic.

Following the massive layoffs, it isn’t easy to picture the brand remaining the same. They never are. The internet is replete with zombie periodicals bearing famous names but lacking souls, reduced to mere shells of their former dynamic selves.

vice

The Hollowing Out Of Vice And BuzzFeed Marks The End Of The Digital Media Revolution

Surprisingly, when the Vice Media crew learned the tragic news Thursday, co-founder Shane Smith, whose salesman-like confidence earned him over $100 million from the outlet, was nowhere to be found. The company would “look to partner with established media companies to distribute our digital content, including news, on their global platforms, as we fully transition to a studio model.” There has yet to be a word on who these partners might be.

The business also must decide what to do with Refinery29 and Motherboard. Dixon stated Vice Media is in “advanced talks” about selling the former. And I’m informed that many negotiations are taking place about what to do with Motherboard, with one option being licencing the tech-focused vertical to another company that would operate it, similar to the Sports Illustrated approach.

According to what I learned Thursday, executives are still determining if the stuff the site has produced over the years will remain online.

Meanwhile, the hundreds of employees who were left wondering what would happen to them would have to wait until the weekend to find out if they were laid off. It was a nasty act. Regardless, employees in the digital publishing department have mostly accepted their destiny.

“I think most of us have seen the writing on the wall: there are simply not enough lifeboats, and it is highly unlikely that the skeleton crew of us on digital news will be invited onboard one,” the employee told me, comparing Vice Media to the sinking Titanic.

Following the massive layoffs, it isn’t easy to picture the brand remaining the same. They never are. The internet is replete with zombie periodicals bearing famous names but lacking souls, reduced to mere shells of their former dynamic selves.

Surprisingly, when the Vice Media crew learned the tragic news Thursday, co-founder Shane Smith, whose salesman-like confidence earned him over $100 million from the outlet, was nowhere to be found.

SOURCE – (CNN)

Kiara Grace is a staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. Her writing focuses on technology trends, particularly in the realm of consumer electronics and software. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for breaking down complex topics, Kiara delivers insightful analyses that resonate with tech enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Her articles strike a balance between in-depth coverage and accessibility, making them a go-to resource for anyone seeking to stay informed about the latest innovations shaping our digital world.

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Man Set Himself Afire in New York Leaves Shocking Manifesto

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Man Set Himself Afire: Getty Image

In an online manifesto, the man set himself on fire outside a New York courthouse where former President Donald Trump was on trial, citing political motivations. The individual, Max Azzarello, is alive but badly injured. Police observed him dousing himself with fluids before lighting.

Responders on the scene contributed to the fire’s extinguishment. Azzarello’s pamphlets and social media posts suggest conspiracy ideas, but officials do not believe he targeted anyone specifically.

According to accounts, a recently released manifesto ascribed to the man who set himself on fire outside the lower Manhattan courthouse where Trump’s hush money trial is taking place appears to be motivated only by political reasons.

Identified as Max Azzarello, he supposedly runs a Substack page called “The Ponzi Papers,” with his most recent entry headlined “I have set myself on fire outside the Trump Trial.”

In the first lines, Azzarello reveals his extreme act to highlight a critical revelation: “My name is Max Azzarello, and I am an investigative researcher who has set himself on fire outside of the Trump trial in Manhattan. The purpose of this severe protest is to call attention to an urgent and significant finding.”

He went on to say, “We are victims of a totalitarian con, and our government (along with many of their allies) is about to hit us with an apocalyptic fascist world coup.”

The manifesto references a complicated conspiracy involving cryptocurrencies and government collaboration, reflecting themes from Azzarello’s recent social media activities.

Authorities in New York have confirmed that Azzarello is alive but in critical condition.

Man on Fire New York

Man on Fire New York: Getty Image

During an afternoon press briefing following the incident, New York Police Department Chief Jeffrey Maddrey explained: “At 1.30 this afternoon, we observed a male walk into the center of the park, he starts shuffling around his clothes, he opens up a book bag, takes numerous pieces of paper, he throws the pamphlets throughout the park, and then he pulls out a canister and puts some kind of liquid on himself, and he lights himself on fire.”

“New York citizens, court officers, and representatives of the police department rush into the park and try to put him out with their coats and fire extinguishers. Eventually, New York firefighters were able to extinguish the fire,” Maddrey said.

The New York Fire Department eventually extinguished the fire, and Azzarello was reported to be “alive and intubated” at Cornell Medical Center’s burn center.

“I hope you understand how powerful you are. “I wish you much more than luck,” he said at the end of his lengthy manifesto.

The altercation occurred just as Judge Juan Merchan was about to adjourn for lunch on the third day of Trump’s fraud trial. It occurred in a portion of the plaza where small groups of protestors had been gathered every day since Monday, except Wednesday.

Azzarello was seen kneeling on the ground, his arms gesturing madly as flames devoured him. Television commentators described the harrowing scenario as many police officers and a civilian raced towards him.

Amidst the confusion, one person tried smattering the flames with a coat or blanket, while another used a fire extinguisher. Azzarello remained motionless after the fire was extinguished and was later treated by paramedics.

People in New York Horrified

A spectator who witnessed the incident expressed disbelief, saying, “He made a noise and flung all those brochures. It is shocking. A few folks are crying in the park. “There is nothing you can do.”

The NYPD’s chief of detectives, Joseph Kenny, stated that Azzarello’s pamphlets and social media posts indicated that the trial acted as a backdrop rather than a direct reason for his conduct.

Kenny viewed the pamphlet as propaganda-driven, stating: “The pamphlet appears to be propaganda-based, almost like a conspiracy-theory-type of pamphlet, with some information about Ponzi schemes and the fact that some of our local educational institutes are a front for the mob.”

Kenny discovered that Azzarello, from St. Augustine, Florida, has no criminal history in New York and was unknown to officials.

The NYPD’s deputy commissioner, Tarik Sheppard, stated that detectives did not perceive Azzarello’s conduct as targeting any single people or group, including Trump or his supporters.

“We just right now labeled him as a sort of conspiracy theorist, and we’ll go from there, but the investigation will continue,” he said.

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Man Set Himself Ablaze Outside New York Courthouse

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Man on Fire New York
The smell of smoke lingered: Getty Image

A man set himself on fire outside the New York courthouse where former President Donald Trump’s historic hush-money trial was taking place, but officials said he did not appear to be targeting Trump.

The man burned for many minutes in full front of television cameras stationed outside the courthouse, which is hosting the first-ever criminal prosecution of a former United States president.

“He was on fire for quite a while,” one witness told reporters, declining to provide his name. “It was pretty horrifying.”

Officials said the man, who is in his late thirties, survived and was in critical condition at a hospital.

According to witnesses, the man removed leaflets from a rucksack and hurled them into the air before dousing himself with liquid and setting himself on fire. One of the booklets mentioned “evil billionaires,” but the portions accessible to a Reuters witness did not mention Trump.

According to the New York Police Department, Max Azzarello of St. Augustine, Florida, did not appear to target Trump or any other trial participants.

“Right now, we are labeling him as a conspiracy theorist, and we will proceed from there,” Tarik Sheppard, a deputy commissioner of the Police Department, said at a news conference.

In an online manifesto, a man using that name admitted to setting himself on fire and apologized to friends, bystanders, and first responders. The message warns of “an apocalyptic fascist coup” and condemns Bitcoin and US politicians but does not mention Trump specifically.

A Reuters witness reported that smoke persisted in the plaza shortly after the incident and that a police officer sprayed a fire extinguisher on the ground. A flaming rucksack and a gas can were both visible.

US Truckers Boycott New York, Rally Behind Trump

US Truckers Boycott Corrupt New York, Rally Behind Trump

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G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

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AP - VOR News Image

Paris police find no weapons on a man detained at Iran’s consulate.

Police said Friday that they discovered no weapons on a man held at the Iranian consulate in Paris after responding to a report of a suspicious man carrying a grenade and an explosives vest.

A Paris police spokesperson told The Associated Press that authorities were verifying the man’s identity but discovered no such weapons on him or in his car.

iran

AP News – VOR News Image

G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not permitted to be publicly identified under police procedure.

Some of the police, special agents, and firefighters who rushed to the situation at the consulate were later spotted leaving the area after being arrested. A police cordon remained in place, although traffic had resumed in the area.

According to the official, the individual was observed late Friday morning, and police initiated a special operation as soon as they were notified.

The event occurred at a time of heightened tensions in the Middle East, as Paris prepares to host the summer Olympics.

The director of the United Nations’ nuclear inspector says there was no damage to the Isfahan nuclear facility following a purported Israeli drone attack on a major air base near the Iranian city.

When asked about the nuclear facility on Sky News, International Atomic Energy Agency Director-General Rafael Mariano Grossi stated, “There hasn’t been any damage at the site or anything that would indicate that (there) were hits nearby or something that could lead you to believe that there was an intention to reach these places.”

The Isfahan facility has three small research reactors supplied by China, as well as fuel production and other activities for Iran’s civilian nuclear program.

iran

G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

Isfahan also contains locations related with Iran’s nuclear program, such as the subterranean Natanz enrichment facility, which has been frequently attacked by suspected Israeli sabotage strikes.

Iranian authorities claim that air defenses fired on a key air base in Isfahan, which has long housed Iran’s fleet of American-made F-14 Tomcats, purchased prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

Missile remnants were discovered Friday near Latifiya, southwest of Baghdad.

An official with an Iranian-backed militia in Iraq, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak with journalists, said the missile was shot down due to jamming efforts. The Iraqi army lacks jamming systems similar to those used to destroy the rocket, but Iran has handed such gear to its allied militias.

It was unclear whether the rocket was part of an Israeli attack on Iran or last weekend’s Iranian attack on Israel. Local media images of the site showed what seemed to be an air-to-surface missile. There were no reports of Iran firing air-to-surface missiles during Saturday’s onslaught, which comprised over 300 drones, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles.

iran

G7 Warns Of New Sanctions Against Iran As World Reacts To Apparent Israeli Drone Attack

Tehran launched the attack in response to a purported Israeli strike in Syria on April 1, which killed two Iranian generals in an Iranian consulate building.

SOURCE (AP)

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