Writing in a post on the site, editor in chief Lydia Polgreen announced the company would be closing its unpaid blogger platform in the U.S. (the U.K. unpaid blogger platform is still up and running). Polgreen says the platform is being shuttered due to the ubiquity of social media:
As we roll out these changes, we are ending the HuffPost contributor platform. The platform, which launched in May 2005, was a revolutionary idea at the time: give a megaphone to lots of people ― some famous, some completely unknown ― to tell their stories. At that time, social networks barely existed. Facebook was a nascent dating site for college students. Twitter had not been invented. The platforms where so many people now share their views, like LinkedIn, Medium and others, were far in the future.
Since 2005 over 100,000 unpaid contributors have blogged for HuffPost. While it’s true the platform did give those people a chance to show off their writing skills, some people–including many of those unpaid bloggers themselves–felt HuffPost was using the fruits of their unpaid hard work to turn a nice profit–which the company kept to itself.