Despite the increase in revenue, SnapChat’s Discover platform, which was revamped when the company introduced a disastrous app-wide redesign earlier this year, is losing some of its bigger names. That signals trouble for both Discover and the people who were hired by its partners to create content.
According to Bloomberg, Conde Nast is pulling its channels for Vogue, Wired and GQ — laying off the employees hired to run them. However, the story states that Teen Vogue and Self will keep their channels.
After SnapChat’s redesign earlier this year, quality control of the Discover portion of the platform fell. Influencers and partners were now able to appear in the section when Stories was consolidated.
Media had once been able to rely on the platform to offer a quality space for their brands, with partners like Hearst, The New York Times and other publishers coming aboard. But since the redesign, Discover has turned into a bed of click-bait content. It may bring in more advertising revenue for the company, lessens the likelihood that brands with carefully protected reputations will want to remain.
In a story reported by Ad Age, Rich Greenfield, media analyst at BTIG Research, stated: "[Discover] has now become a digital version of a supermarket end cap, featuring titles like National Enquirer, where clickbait and racy content rule.”
This is only the latest in a series of problems created by tech companies for publishers.
Just last week, following news that Facebook had grossly inflated its video views and possibly led the stampede to “pivot to video” for publishers — though some outlets deny this was the case — Refinery29 laid off 10% of its staff, including employees hired to produce quick video content for the company.
The shakeups to staffing and profitability underscore a changing media landscape that carries risks to resources and revenue.