Bill de Blasio
Bill de Blasio, shown here at a rally in New York City in October 2017. Mayor de Blasio is being pressured by the ICE to release critical information about Reeaz Khan, an undocumented immigrant accused of murdering an old lady in Queens last month. Getty Images

After the news broke that Joe Ricketts was shuttering media companies Gothamist and DNAinfo, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio had some choice words for the billionaire. Ricketts announced the organizations’ closure a week after employees voted to unionize.

“Joe Ricketts is a coward,” de Blasio tweeted Friday. “He wouldn’t last a minute under the intrepid scrutiny of the reporters he employed. What a loss for our city.”

More than 100 staff were informed via email Thursday they would lose their jobs in the wake of the abrupt closures.

“I’ve made the difficult decision to begin the orderly wind down of the DNAinfo/Gothamist business,” Ricketts wrote. “Reaching this decision wasn’t easy, and it wasn’t one I made lightly.”

Ricketts justified the decision by saying “businesses need to be economically successful if they are to endure.”

Social media users also railed against Ricketts’ decision.

“Journalism isn’t a hobby for rich people to experiment with and then abandon when it becomes inconvenient for them,” one person tweeted.

“Gothamist was the best NYC news for years,” wrote another. “Voice, character, real perspective. Gawker’s gone, Village Voice is a ghost. NYC media is f------.”

Adding fuel to the fire was Ricketts’ apparent decision to delete the archives from the website – removing all articles before the reporters who wrote them had a chance to save the clips.

“If only Joe Ricketts could have scraped together the money to keep Gothamist and DNAinfo up long enough for writers to save their clips,” one person tweeted, alongside a screenshot of Ricketts’ reported $2.1 billion net worth.

Ricketts, the former CEO and chairman of the brokerage firm Ameritade, founded DNAinfo in 2009 in an effort to “report unbiased neighborhood news and information,” he said.

“While we made important progress toward building DNAinfo into a successful business, in the end, that progress hasn’t been sufficient enough to support the tremendous effort and expense needed to produce the type of journalism on which the company was founded,” Ricketts wrote in a statement Thursday. “I want to thank our readers for their support and loyalty through the years. And I want to thank our employees for their tireless effort and dedication.”