The entire editorial and social media staff of online LGBTQ publication INTO, owned by Grindr, were laid off in a “shift to video,” reported the Advocate.
The INTO team was made aware of the cut news on January 15, according to a statement released by editors.
“The team at INTO was saddened to learn this morning that as of Jan. 15, we will no longer be with Grindr,” read the statement. “The company will be refocusing its efforts on video and as such, the editorial and social teams were let go this morning.”
“As with any growing business, we have to continually evaluate what is best for Grindr,” the company told TheWrap. “After a thoughtful and collaborative process, Grindr’s leadership decided to modify INTO’s content mix to rely more heavily on video.”
According to Grindr, the decision was driven by the higher engagement seen through Twitter and YouTube. A spokesperson for Grindr said that some staff remains at INTO to shift the site to video.
“We feel that INTO’s closure is a tremendous loss for LGBTQ media, journalism, and the world,” said the editor’s statement, and many seem to agree.
— National Center for Lesbian Rights (@NCLRights) January 16, 2019
INTO has been such a powerful voice for young queer people everywhere. I am utterly devastated by this news.
— Landen Zumwalt (@LandenRafe) January 15, 2019
Throughout its run, @into has been an important source of news and culture for LGBTQ people, reported by a team of talented queer writers. This is a major loss for the LGBTQ news landscape. https://t.co/P6pju3yubW
— GLAAD (@glaad) January 15, 2019
In an opinion piece on the Daily Beast, Samantha Allen mourns the loss of the LGBTQ media source.
“[INTO] was the sort of publication that the 21st century LGBT community not only deserves, but so sorely needs,” Allen wrote. “At a time when LGBT rights are under such obvious attach and the mainstream press responds with cowardly “both sides” journalism, there are too few outlets that treat our humanity as a settled question rather than a subject for debate.”
“This is why INTO’s sudden closure this week was such a devastating blow for all LGBT media,” Allen continued. “Well-funded media outlets that make diverse and humanizing content for the full range of the LGBT community – well, they don’t exactly proliferate.”
INTO launched in August 2017 as an LGBTQ news source targeting a millennial audience. The site has made headlines multiple times in the past: once for a controversial commentary article calling an Ariana Grande music video transphobic and racist, and another time for calling out the president of Grindr, Scott Chen, for anti-LGBTQ remarks.