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New York — BuzzFeed has given up on going public for now and Mashable is looking for an emergency buyer. The honeymoon period looks to be over for online news websites — left fragile by a model built almost entirely on advertising. Less than two years ago, blog-turned-news site Mashable was valued at $250m, with Time Warner among its investors. Today, its value has plummeted by 80% and it is reportedly about to be sold to Ziff Davis. The publisher did not respond to requests for comment. Meanwhile, revenue that fell short of expectations at BuzzFeed — built on a combination of pop culture and social networks — mean it is no longer expected to go public next year. The website has just announced it is letting go of about 100 of its 1,700 employees. These sites — like others founded in the past 10 years — promised investors huge growth driven by advertising as traditional media battled for survival. But in the space of a few months, the tide has turned — as Google and Facebook’s chokeh...

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