Staff Reporters
Apr 30, 2024

Yahoo retrenches journalists, social media staff in Singapore

The media giant is pivoting its strategy in Asia towards content curation, and has reportedly laid off 17 members of its local digital team.

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

Yahoo is restructuring its operations in Singapore, discontinuing its editorial and social media teams in favour of a strategy focused on content curation. The decision will affect 17 staff members, who will depart after May 7, as per reports from The Edge Singapore and Straits Times.

The layoffs follow an evaluation by Yahoo that showed higher engagement levels driven by partner content over original reporting, according to Straits Times. This shift aligns with Yahoo’s broader global strategy to streamline operations and focus on high-engagement content.

Affected employees (some with long tenures at Yahoo) will receive compensation slightly more than two weeks’ pay per year of service, The Edge Singapore noted, citing an anonymous source.

In accordance with reports, affected staff were briefed on Tuesday last week (April 23) about the changes, and have been offered the opportunity to apply for new roles within the company.

Under its new strategy, Yahoo plans to hire three curation editors and a market lead for Yahoo News Singapore. A Yahoo spokesperson told Straits Times that this strategic pivot ensures that "readers can expect to continue seeing the content they most regularly engage with and enjoy."

While Yahoo is not unionised in Singapore, Straits Times noted it had reached out to the National Trades Union Congress for comments on the layoffs.

The latest announcements come after Yahoo reported it expected to reduce the workforce of its adtech division (previously called Yahoo For Business) by nearly 50% by the end of 2023. The cuts represented over 20% of the total workforce of Yahoo, or more than 1,600 employees. Yahoo has also previously retrenched journalists based in Singapore in both 2016 and 2022.

Despite the shift away from original content in Singapore, Yahoo news sites globally will still feature a combination of third-party and original content, with the company affirming its commitment to investing in Asia. 

Source:
Campaign Asia

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