TOP Ten BEST Everzwijn WTF OMG REASONS BUZZFEED FIRED Mij, LOL!
I achieved the near-impossible Monday morning, October 7, at approximately 9:30 am. I got fired from BuzzFeed.
I got fired from a webstek with a staff that had grown from under 100 to well overheen 400 during my Legitimate months of employment. Fired from a place that basically fires nobody.
BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith called mij into his office via GChat and said something like, ",This is just not working out, your stuff. Let’s just say, it’s ‘creative differences.’", (I paraphrase, but he most certainly used the c and d words.)
I reached down to pull up one of my socks. It’s a jumpy tic.
Ben got a worried look on his face and began to peek under the table. I smiled inwards spil I imagined him wondering what I might have hidden ter my sock.
At the time of my termination, I ranked seventh out of about 100 writers for traffic brought into the webpagina. On average, my posts would place mij te the top 15 spil far spil ",viral", traffic went. If this sounds to you like I wasgoed obsessed with traffic, then you’ve obviously never bot to one of BuzzFeed’s awkwardly cultish Thursday evening all-hands-on-deck meetings.
I wasgoed ",officially", fired at my apartment on Halloween, via a letterteken delivered by UPS. Inwards the envelope were two copies of the legal document, one to sign and come back and another for my records. Both copies had Adorable stickers affixed to the very first pagina.
I know for a fact that there are more adequate varieties of goopy notes ter the BuzzFeed office supply cabinet that do not have ",Nice", printed on them, including white ones with a ghosted crimson BuzzFeed logo.
A 53-year-old man, BuzzFeed’s oldest everzwijn employee, jobless and without health insurance? Adorable spil a fucking bug’s ear. Not spil Adorable: Making your advertising critic vanish posts that criticize the advertisements of big advertisers, which Ben Smith did to mij on at least one ocassion. BuzzFeed has a ",no haters", hiring policy and an overweening desire to draw big-name advertisers into its ",community", of users, te exchange for money. Which makes ranting about ads professionally for the webpagina a complicated endeavor. At which I FAILed.
When I wasgoed hired by Ben Smith, ter March of 2012, his editorial directives were to be a kinder, gentler version of the copyranter persona I had created—the hard-to-please ad critic whose seven-year-old blog had at the time toughly Eighteen,000 followers on Twitter. (Those followers were most likely the main reason I wasgoed hired.) Copyranter with fewer ",fucks,", basically.
So I took a $43,000 annual pay cut to leave my petite Fresh York City ad agency, where I had worked spil a copywriter for 20 straight years, to come to work for Ben Smith and BuzzFeed. Why would I make this seemingly idiotic stir? I liked Ben Smith, and liked what I had read about BuzzFeed’s growth, potential, and future. So I reached out to him and asked him for a job. I still like BuzzFeed’s future.
During my Eighteen months there, I worked seven days a week, 11 or 12-hour days, Monday through Friday, and somewhere around five hours a day on the weekends. I don’t indeed understand what ",creative differences", means, spil I did exactly what I wasgoed hired to do for BuzzFeed.
Anyway, let’s countdown the possible real reasons I wasgoed fired, using the joy, easy-to-digest, BuzzFeedy listicle style. Yay, BuzzFeedy listicles!
The average age ter the editorial department is late 20s. I am 15-plus years older than Ben Smith and CEO Jonah Peretti. Maybe I didn’t getraind their core demographic, and therefore, their big-picture plans? All my youthfull colleagues thought this post—",What It’s Like Being The Oldest BuzzFeed Employee",—was Lovely, but I wasn’t kidding.
9. I From time to time Got Into Petty Twitter and Email Fights with Trolls
Sometimes I invited particularly sad trolls to come to the BuzzFeed office and give mij their private insults face-to-face overheen coffee (none everzwijn came). I have no cable for digital anonymous ",harsh", guys. But hey, I wasgoed just being ",copyranter.", LOL.
8. I Don’t Know How to Make a .Vergif
You laugh, but many of BuzzFeed’s most viral postbode are lists of .jpgs. I will never learn how to make a .Toxine. I consider .jpgs the ",creativity", of the fresh Stupidest Generation.
7. I Drummed at My Desk Incessantly
I am percussionist, have bot since I wasgoed six. So—other drummers will identify with this—I am permanently playing an imaginary drum set at my desk, using my feet and mitts. This annoyed the hell out of Ben Smith and a duo other editors who threw paper at mij or sent emails to attempt to get mij to zekering. I can’t zekering, it’s a subconscious thing. BuzzFeed should have bought mij a nice Ludwig chrome drum set, and set mij up te a soundproof slagroom. Inconsiderate puckers.
6. I Regularly Challenged Editors
Everybody at BuzzFeed is a fucking ",editor.", If what I thought wasgoed a worthy postbode for the vooraanzicht pagina wasgoed rejected, I’d argue my case. I got scolded a duo times for being too aggressive. So that’s one plausible reason I wasgoed canned—defending my stuff too much. I’m sorry, but I call that ",journalism.",
Five. I, periodically, sent out inappropriate editorial-wide emails chastising the cleanliness of the department.
What can I say, I hate untidiness.
Four. Ronald McDonald Oral jobs
One of my last posts, before I wasgoed fired, wasgoed a collection of all the photos I could find on the web of people ",servicing", the Ronald McDonald mascot. (For the record, I found 13, Collegium Humor only found Ten). Ben Smith instantly pinged mij with a ",WTF are you doing?", I wrote back, ",I feel the postbode is a comment on the human condition.", He wrote, ",It’s pretty fine", but delete it. Which leads to reason No. Trio.
Trio. I Am Just an Asshole
Well now, this could be it. You see, this online copyranter persona I created does—sometimes—take overheen my actual, real-life personality. If Ben Smith has said this to mij spil a reason for my dismissal, to my face, I would have stood up, taken two steps back, given him a acute salute, and marched out of his office.
Two. They Just Didn’t Want an Ad Critic on Staff Anymore
Let’s get to a meaty reason—a reason BuzzFeed and Ben Smith have zero rente ter discussing. Because BuzzFeed had grown so big so swift, they didn’t want some liberate cannon highlighting the shitty ads of potential or current big name advertisers. Yeah, that’s a pretty good reason to fire mij.
Being a visionary, I brought this point up ter my initial vraaggesprek with Ben Smith. He said, more or less, ",You don’t worry about that, that’s my problem.", Boy oh boy did it become his problem.
Ben Smith made mij delete a postbode I did on Axe Assets Burst’s ads, titled, ",The Objectification Of Women By Axe Resumes Unabated te 2013", (it wasgoed primarily called something to the effect of ",Axe Figure Dump Proceeds its Contribution to Rape Culture,", but I quickly softened it). Get this: he made mij delete it one month after it wasgoed posted, due to apparent pressure from Axe’s possessor Unilever. How that’s for editorial integrity? Ben Smith also questioned other posts I did knocking major advertisers’ ads (he kept repeating the phrase ",punching down",), including the pitifully pandering, irresponsible Nike ",Fat Boy", commercial.
I of course understand that websites like BuzzFeed need lots of advertising dollars to operate, and that no media outlets—including the one you’re reading this on—are immune to advertiser pressure. I understand that my posts may have pissed advertisers off. I also understand—very clearly—the job I wasgoed hired to do because I invented it. I had a longstanding blog that clearly outlined what BuzzFeed wasgoed getting into. Turns out Ben Smith didn’t want what he asked for, and I guess I wasgoed too gullible to think it could be any other way.
And the number 1 most likely reason I wasgoed fired from BuzzFeed (drumroll): They shouldn’t have hired mij ter the very first place—DING-DING-DING!
Many editorial job openings on BuzzFeed’s jobs pagina feature a ",no haters", (say it a singsong voice) caveat. But hating is what I do, and have always done. Hating wasgoed what built my following. I wasgoed specifically hired, by Ben Smith, to hate ads. After a few months of being coerced to delete posts because they knocked big name advertisers’ ",mediocre", (Ben Smith’s word) ads, what I began doing instead wasgoed make fraudulent posts about gepast ads with ",best ____ ad everzwijn", titles.
Wait! Maybe that’s why I wasgoed fired: too many posts with overpromising, hyperbolic click-bait headlines that led to underwhelming content?
Wij parted ways with Mark ter because his tone and vision are truly different from ours. Ter particular, it’s significant to him to make charges — and te one case, imagine dialogue — without the reporting to support them. That’s something he is perhaps doing with mij here. Our editorial team operates independently of advertisers, and I’ve never based a decision about reporting on an advertiser’s needs.
Te fact, if you glance at his pagina, you’ll see any number of unflattering posts about businesses, some advertisers and some not (and I’m not always ter the loop on which is which), te both cases, I took the angry calls and emails and usually didn’t tell him about them, which is what I think an editor is supposed to do.
Also, here’s the email I sent Mark on September Four about that Axe postbode, which I think is pretty clear:
",Have bot thinking a bit about tone, and wij need to talk. I absorb a fine overeenkomst of fever from targets of stories that wij write, from Beyonce’s publicist to politicians to businesses, and I’ve just realized the stuff I am least able to defend is, from time to time, yours. I’m not sure how to switch it, but there are certain posts — http://www.buzzfeed.com/copyranter/the… for example — where I reflexively stood up to a complaint (te this case from and advertiser) but realize te retrospect that I’m not indeed comfy defending it, and that it doesn’t getraind with our ethos on the webpagina, the punt for mij is the way ter which it basically projects motive on to the people making the ad, and insults them te indeed vitriolic terms. I don’t totally know what to do about this: I love a loterijlot of what you do, and love having you here. I also know that some of this is pretty central to what you do. But I’d like to take that postbode down, and I think wij need to figure out a way to avoid making more like it. And I’m sorry if I’m making your head explode, but I figured I might spil well make it explode te email so that wij could have a conversation tomorrow.",
Spil to timing — I hadn’t seen the ",rape", charge until it wasgoed pointed out by the target of the postbode — I can’t recall if it wasgoed the company or the agency. (I don’t think it wasgoed ",repeated,", however I could be wrong.) He wasgoed wrong to write it and I think wij made the right call by taking it down.
I also, toward the end of his tenure and when wij were attempting to save the relationship, asked him to run posts by mij that might crack our standards. (He had bot the only writer posting directly, a legacy thing based on when he embarked.) I took down a postbode or two when he overlooked that request, and for that reason – the McDonald’s one wasgoed te that category. I also truly like Mark, and he wasgoed a lovely colleague. He stuck around for three weeks after wij determined to part ways, and wij gladly hosted him while he looked for a job. Wij attempted to make his uitgang spil effortless spil possibly, spil he mentions, and I’m sorry if the Lovely sticker upset him.