President Donald Trump took the opportunity to blast "fake news" again by gloating about the recent layoffs sweeping online journalism – only to receive backlash he wasn't expecting.
Responding to the almost 1,000 layoffs across media outlets last week, including the Huffington Post and BuzzFeed, the president tweeted yesterday:
Ax falls quickly at Buzzfeed and Huffpost!" Headling, New York Post. Fake News and bad journalist have cause a big downturn. Sadly, many others will follow. The people want the Truth!
But now, Trump, whose partial government shutdown became the longest in history and only just recently ended, is being criticised for celebrating the loss of 1,000 American jobs, with many angry people taking to Twitter to condemn him for his words.
@realDonaldTrump It’s unfortunate that a President can be gleeful when Americans lose their jobs
— West Wing Reports (@West Wing Reports)
@realDonaldTrump You’re the first American president to celebrate job loss. Congrats?
While the president is blaming the cuts on "bad journalism", the real reason companies are downsizing is because of a decline in advertising numbers. This has been caused by tech giants Google and Facebook, who have made it more difficult for news sites to make revenue from advertisements on their platforms by changing their algorithms.
Media group Verizon, which owns HuffingtonPost and Yahoo, announced last week it would cut 7 per cent of staff, while BuzzFeed said it will cut about 15 per cent of their workforce, resulting in a total layoff of about 1000 workers in the industry.
Describing the strain the move has had on the company, CEO and founder of Buzzfeed Jonah Peretti said:
This experience is heartbreaking for everyone involved. We had people up until 4am last night trying to accelerate the process and meet with as many people as possible before the weekend.
I wish this wasn't the case, but it is. I know this is resulting in additional anxiety and stress, we are trying to mitigate as much as possible. It really sucks and I'm sorry
But people were sure to remind the president what the real reasons were the cuts were happening, stressing the importance of the media.
@realDonaldTrump Let me tell you something that is not fake news. You are the most authoritarian, corrupt, and inco… https://t.co/3e2uimBann
— Dr. Jeffrey Guterman (@Dr. Jeffrey Guterman)
Also worth noting, given the president's crusade against media -- political reporters is deeply important. But so m… https://t.co/ymGSXTHppc