Genius laid off a quarter of its staff and is moving toward video - Brooklyn


Mar. 16, 2017 7:21 am

Genius laid off a quarter of its staff and is moving toward video

A report from The Verge explores the Gowanus company's “dramatic” shift.

Swag from the "Rap Genius" era.

(Photo by Brady Dale)

Brooklyn web annotating startup Genius has laid off a quarter of its staff in a retrenchment, and is now focusing on creating video content. This according to a piece published yesterday by Casey Newton in The Verge exploring the company’s new path.

It might explain Genius’s recent On the Market entry looking for a producer to make a daily video on music news.

From The Verge:

It’s not unusual for tech companies to transform over time, though typically they are loath to lay off engineers. But Genius’ shift is more dramatic than most: going from all-encompassing annotator of the internet to a more traditional media company model, chasing video views alongside an ever-growing number of well-capitalized competitors.

Read the full story

Some of Genius’s problems with its editorial push started last spring when former News Editor Leah Finnegan caused a stir with some particularly biting annotations of a writer’s blog post.

Tyler Woods

Tyler Woods is the lead reporter for Brooklyn. His work has previously appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, the Houston Chronicle, CT Financial News and the New Canaan News. There's little he loves more than great tweets on


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