Mic.com announced that it would be laying off the majority of its editorial staff amid a cash crunch and talks of a possible firesale to Bustle chief Bryan Goldberg, a company rep confirmed to TheWrap on Thursday.
The news was first revealed by company CEO and co-founder Chris Altchek in a staff meeting this morning. Among those leaving included the website’s publisher, Cory Haik, who also emailed the staff this morning to announce her departure.
“It is with great sadness that I write to you this morning to resign my position as Publisher,” she wrote. “Our business models are unsettled and the macro forces at play are all going through their own states of unrest.”
One of those macro forces was an overreliance on traffic from Facebook, and the social network’s decision to cancel Mic’s Facebook Watch program.
Reps for Bustle did not immediately respond to request for comment from TheWrap, but reports yesterday suggested that any acquisition of the company would come with a significantly reduced staff.
In September, Altchek, categorically denied that anything was wrong. In a tweet, Altchek berated Columbia Journalism Review’s Matthew Ingram for suggesting it wasn’t.
Well, the news is out: Today is my last day @Mic. I'm so proud of what we've accomplished here, me over the past 2.5 years. If anyone is looking for a snarky political junkie and reporter, my personal email is email@example.com. And hire my amazing colleagues, too.
— Emily C. Singer (@CahnEmily) November 29, 2018
Surprise: I no longer work at Mic! Here’s my resume. https://t.co/MZE0NfTSuu
— ????????♂️avier Harding (@iamxavier) November 29, 2018
Me leaving the Mic newsroom today for the last time https://t.co/NH2UgmSp9M
— Brianna Provenzano (@bri_provenzano) November 29, 2018
After raising $60 million, growth stalled at the millennial focused website, which suffered from many of the same problems that have plagued other media companies that were too reliant on social media traffic.
This is the latest in a string of bad news for Mic. In September, longtime reporter Jack Smith IV was forced out in the wake of a #MeToo scandal just weeks ago.
“Because of the multiple, disturbing allegations made in this story against Jack Smith, we have terminated our contract with him, effective immediately,” executive news director Kerry Lauerman said in a note shared to staff in September.
The accusations against Smith were reported by Jezebel — which you can read here.