National Geographic reportedly lays off its last staff writers
Nineteen staffers affected, according to Washington Post, with celebrated magazine to end newsstand sales
National Geographic has reportedly laid off its last staff writers and will no longer be sold on US newsstands.
Nineteen editorial staffers were affected by the layoffs, the Washington Post reported, and several staffers confirmed the news on Twitter.
“I’ve been so lucky. I got to work w/incredible journalists and tell important, global stories. It’s been an honor,” tweeted Craig Welch, one of National Geographic’s now former senior writers. The journalist Doug Main said on Twitter on Tuesday: “National Geographic is laying off its staff writers, including me.
The organization’s future editorial work will instead be done by freelance writers and the few editors remaining on staff, the Post reported. National Geographic told media outlets, however, that some writers would remain on staff.
As part of the cost-cutting measures instituted by the publication’s parent company, Disney, the magazine, with its memorable yellow border, will no longer be available on newsstands in the US as of next year, the newspaper reported.
The outlet, which has documented the natural world and global humanity for over a century, told CNN in a statement that it would continue to publish monthly issues.
“Staffing changes will not change our ability to do this work, but rather give us more flexibility to tell different stories and meet our audiences where they are across our many platforms,” the spokesperson told the outlet. “Any insinuation that the recent changes will negatively impact the magazine, or the quality of our storytelling, is simply incorrect.”
National Geographic did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Guardian.
This news comes amid a series of large layoffs that have shaken the media industry in recent months. In late November, CNN began laying off hundreds of staffers across different areas of the company. This was the second round of layoffs the company conducted last year after it shelved its $100m streaming platform CNN+ just three weeks after its debut, affecting 350 employees.
In December 2022, Jonah Peretti, the CEO of Buzzfeed, announced that 12% of the digital media company’s staff, nearly 200 people, would be let go. The announcement caused the once ubiquitous company’s stock to hit an all-time low at $1.06 a share.
Vice Media, which operates online and broadcast platforms, laid off about a dozen employees and in May of this year filed for bankruptcy. This move appeared to be the death knell for Vice, which cut 250 roles in 2019.