The Failing Washington Post Wants to Replace Its Journalists With AI Bots as Losses Mount

The failing newspaper The Washington Post is seeking to pivot towards artificial intelligence (AI) after posting a humiliating $77 million loss over the past financial year.

According to Semafor media industry editor Max Tani, the paper’s CEO and publisher, Will Lewis, told staff that it plans to incorporate AI across the company.

Tani reported:

Washington Post CEO Will Lewis is introing the paper’s new “Build It” plan today. In a meeting with staff, he noted that the paper lost $77 million over the past year, and saw a 50% drop off in audience since 2020: “To be direct, we are in a hole, and we have been for some time.”

Lewis says the says the three pillars of the new strategy are: great journalism, happy customers, and making money: “If we’re doing things that don’t meet all three…we should stop doing that.” He adds that the company will also be looking for ways to use AI in its journalism.

AI is a major component of the Post’s internal strategy announcement today. WaPo’s chief tech officer told staff that going forward, the paper has to have “AI everywhere in our newsroom.” Lewis says the company is focused on growing subscriptions organically but is open to growing them through an acquisition if it makes sense.

The Post’s financial troubles come after their billionaire sugar daddy Jeff Bezos indicated that he would not continue to subsidize the company’s losses. Last year, the company laid off hundreds of employees in response to the “financial hardship” it had experienced amid falling subscribers.

Coincendetally, the shift towards AI coincides with the announcement of a $250 million agreement between NewsCorp and OpenAI that will grant the company access to content from NewsCorp’s various properties, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Post, and The Times of London.

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Ben Kew is a writer and editor. Originally from the UK, he moved to the U.S. to cover Congress for Breitbart News and has since gone on to editorial roles at Human Events, Townhall Media, and Americano Media. He has also written for The Epoch Times, The Western Journal, and The Spectator.

You can email Ben Kew here, and read more of Ben Kew's articles here.

 

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