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BusinessJournalist jobs at risk as Meta axes funding for newsrooms

Journalist jobs at risk as Meta axes funding for newsrooms

Around 100 regional journalism jobs hang in the balance as Facebook owner Meta withdraws its funding for UK local newsrooms.

Uncertainty looms over the media landscape as Meta confirms it will not renew funding for its Community News Project, a lifeline that has sustained the dreams of over 260 regional journalists with a staggering $17 million since its inception just five years ago.

The rug has been pulled from under the feet of media stalwarts, including Reach, publisher of iconic regional titles like the Manchester Evening News and the Liverpool Echo.

Terrific journalist talent

A Reach spokesperson reported: “The CNP has cultivated terrific journalistic talent in our newsrooms and we’ve been proud to be able to keep so many of the CNP journalists at Reach through permanent positions after their training has finished.

“Our focus today is on supporting the brilliant journalists we currently have working with us in the scheme and in continuing to support them over the coming months through their remaining training and contract.”

Facebook news tab

Under other plans, Meta is also planning to axe its Facebook News Tab.

This tab, once a beacon of hope for impartial content, had Meta shelling out to publishers for carefully curated news.

However, it’s now destined to become a thing of the past in the UK, France, and Germany, come December.

Of the roughly 100 reporters hanging in the balance under Meta’s scheme, Newsquest employs about 22, Reach Plc employs 28, National World employs 32, Iliffe News and Media employs five, with the remainder scattered among smaller publishers.

The National Council for the Training of Journalists, which has been the custodian of the Community News Project, is not ready to let the torch extinguish.

They’re “currently exploring ways to secure the project’s legacy and propel it into the future, in collaboration with regional news publishers.”

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