BuzzFeed copy editor visits journalism students


By Caroline Donohue and Ella Bloomingdale ’20

Emmy Favilla, a senior commerce editor at Buzzfeed NYC came to Staples High School on Nov. 29 to speak about her book “A World Without ‘Whom,’” her Buzzfeed experience and copy editing. After giving a presentation about the difference between Chicago Style and AP Style, some students asked Favilia about her years at Buzzfeed.

Favilla began her presentation by discussing the importance of AP Style at a large publishing company. After clarifying the importance of copy editing, she shared about her copy editing experience specifically at Buzzfeed.

“Buzzfeed is a very negotiable place to work, there’s not much tug-of-war there,” Favilla said.

She also stated that Buzzfeed is a lively and creative atmosphere that always keeps her busy. “You never really get bored of working there since there’s such a variety of things to read,” she said.

Favilla has had many other jobs working as a copy editor. She originally worked at Teen Vogue and later began working at Buzzfeed. In addition to being a copy editor at Buzzfeed, she creates lists and quizzes for the online website.

Favilla also added that she enjoys working at Buzzfeed because of the fast changing environment and different tasks she’s required to complete. “I like that as an editor you are reading stories from a weird-looking hat that Harry Styles wore the other day to a nine thousand word opinion piece looking into abusive cases at a mental health facility,” Favilla said.

Buzzfeed has changed immensely since Favilla began working at the company, “I think it’s really cool that when I started at Buzzfeed it was 160 people and now were like 1500 around the globe,” Favilla said. “So it was really cool to see it shift from a website that was known for posting cat memes and gifs of hamsters wearing hats, to actually creating real journalism that gets results.”
Favilla also spoke about her book “A World Without ‘Whom’” and read an excerpt of the book during the presentation, which begins with talking about web lingo and the commonly used phrase, “LOL.” The books comments on the English language and how it has changed throughout the years due to comedy and wit from the Internet.

The book was published last month and and is suggested by Kirkus Reviews as, “A lighthearted take on communicating in the digital age.”

Students from the Advanced Journalism and Introduction to Journalism classes at Staples High School attended the presentation.

“I found the talk interesting, hearing from someone who got to work at many publications at such a young age is so fascinating for me,” Jordi Katz ’20 said. “As a student journalist, I hope one day I can do the same thing.”