Meta has halted its highly sought-after London internship program, the latest sign that CEO Mark Zuckerberg is cutting costs as the social media giant’s stock prices plummet.
The aspiring interns were set to start in the coveted positions in January 2023, but were instead notified of the cut in a simple email, sources told The New York Post.
The news left those with internship offers down, with some complaining that they had missed other opportunities to join Meta.
“I have changed my plans and turned down another offer for 2023 because of this offer,” wrote Yure Pablo, a computer science student in Brazil. “So if anyone can help me with another chance for next year, I’d love to apply.”
A spokesperson for Meta also confirmed that the London internship programs had been eliminated.
The news of the terminated internship program comes days after Zuckerberg announced he was ceasing all hiring at Meta and that the company would be smaller in 2023 than it was in 2022 — the first downsizing in the company’s 18-year history.
Meta shares are down just over 60 percent in 2022, after a tumultuous two years that saw the company facing investigations from lawmakers and regulators over user privacy, rigorous scrutiny of Instagram’s negative mental health effects, and increasing competition for younger users from rivals Snapchat and TikTok.
Meta has halted its highly sought-after London internship program, the latest sign that CEO Mark Zuckerberg is cutting costs as the social media giant’s stock prices plummet
The aspiring interns were due to start in the coveted positions in January 2023, but were instead notified of the reduction in a simple email.
Meta spokesperson Andrea Beasley said the London internships were being scrapped in direct response to the company’s new staffing targets.
“Meta interns are crucial in shaping our future,” Beasley told The Post. “This difficult decision was not taken lightly and as a last resort. This company-wide hiring shift should ensure that our hiring goals are aligned with our highest priority efforts and business needs.”
The status of the Meta’s 2023 US stages remains unclear, but in August Bloomberg reported that the company had postponed handing out full-time offers to its 2022 interns.
During a question-and-answer session last week, Zuckerberg blamed the stagnating economy for the workforce freeze.
“I was hoping the economy would have stabilized more clearly by now, but from what we’re seeing, it doesn’t seem to be there yet, so we want to do some conservative planning,” Zuckerberg said. “For the first 18 years of the business, we actually grew rapidly every year, and more recently, our sales have fallen flat to slightly for the first time.”
Meta spokesperson Andrea Beasley said London internships were being scrapped in direct response to the company’s new reduced staffing targets
Fourteen-year-old Molly Russell died by suicide, a death for which social media was officially declared partly responsible for
Some of Meta’s cost-cutting measures have come at the expense of its teenage Instagram users, as a platform moderator claimed the company has skimped on providing resources to the team designed to flag posts about self-harm and suicide.
On condition of anonymity, the moderator said the company could do “much, much better” to protect children on the platform.
In an interview with the Daily Mail, she said: ‘However, I think they could do much, much better – and I don’t think they are prioritizing it financially. I have the feeling that sometimes they cut costs.’
The moderator joined Meta in 2018, a year after 14-year-old Molly Russell died by suicide, a death for which social media was officially declared to be partly responsible for
“Molly Rose Russell died of self-harm while suffering from depression and the negative effects of online content,” a London coroner ruled last week after a lengthy inquest.
After the cause of death ruling, Meta banned all self-harm related content — content reportedly largely from teenage girls — that moderators are required to identify and then remove or flag for law enforcement.
But speaking to DailyMail.com, the unnamed moderator said the multi-billion dollar company was skimping on the program.
“I don’t think I felt qualified. I just did what had to be done,” she said. “But it was up to us to make that decision. Sometimes it can be hard to say. I always tried to be careful.’