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Posts Tagged ‘layoffs’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Time Inc. Lays Off 500 | Carvin Joins FLM | NBCNews.com Launches

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Staff Out of Time: Cutbacks Begin at Top, Dozens More to Come (NY Post / Media Ink)
The cutbacks began Tuesday as expected at Time Inc. and they took a heavy toll among some of the top-echelon executives as the magazine publisher abolished its three-cluster system centered around brands and put everything into one pot. One source said that while the number of cuts did not hit 500 on Tuesday, that was only because a lot of the pink slips will rain down over the next several weeks or months as the reorganized company makes moves to be spun off from Time Warner. FishbowlNY Time Inc. employs about 7,800 people. Should the 500 number be correct, it will be about the same as the massive cuts implemented by Laura Lang — the publishing house’s former CEO — about a year ago. Ad Age / Media News Tuesday’s layoffs mark the second downsizing at Time Inc. in a year. But the latest round of cuts comes as Time Inc. prepares to spin off from parent Time Warner into its own public company and are seen as a way to make the company more attractive to Wall Street. WWD / Memo Pad On Thursday, CEO Joe Ripp will meet with senior leadership to discuss “priorities” for the next several months, and he will conduct “town hall meetings” with current employees. On a slightly brighter note, the company said it promoted Mark Ford to executive vice president of advertising sales, where he will report to Ripp and oversee Time Inc.’s branded solutions division.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Super Bowl Is Ratings Hit | Disney Lays Off Hundreds | Seinfeld on Diversity

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Despite Blowout Game, Super Bowl XLVIII Is Most-Watched TV Show Ever (TVNewser)
That giant sucking sound you heard during the Super Bowl Sunday wasn’t viewers changing the channel. Despite it being a blowout, the Seattle Seahawks’ win over the Denver Broncos averaged 111.5 million people, more than any television program in U.S. history, surpassing the 2012 game on NBC when the New York Giants beat the New England Patriots in a much closer game — 111.3 million watched that Super Bowl. The game is also now the most-watched program on Fox, breaking the 111.0 million viewer mark for the 2011′s Super Bowl, when the Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers. Adweek / VideoWatch Officially, according to Adobe Analytics, Fox’s live stream of Super Bowl XLVIII averaged 528,000 viewers. According to Fox, that’s the biggest live stream of a sporting event in history (a number that is hard to prove, though it would seem to top recent Summer Olympics and March Madness streams). Capital New York The ratings continue to show that the Super Bowl is a juggernaut unlike anything else on TV. Three of the last four Super Bowls have set TV ratings records. While most broadcast programming is losing viewers in an increasingly fragmented video landscape, football — and the Super Bowl in particular — remains untouched by the changes happening in the rest of the media industry. TVSpy The ratings are in for Super Bowl XLVIII, and interestingly enough, the leading market wasn’t Seattle or Denver: As the Seahawks defeated the Broncos 43-8, Kansas City drew the highest ratings, posting a 58.1 rating / 78 share, meaning 78 percent of TVs in use in the Kansas City market were turned to Fox affiliate WDAF. TVSpy Viewers of Little Rock, Ark. Fox affiliate KLRT lost eight minutes of what would normally be prime Super Bowl viewing when the station’s transmitter lost power. The station told viewers on its Facebook page, “We hope to have it restored ASAP. We sincerely apologize.” PRNewser From Vegas to Madison Avenue, everyone was looking to get in on some Super Bowl action. For marketers, that means standing out from the crowd. To accomplish these two things, JCPenney thought it would be a good idea to send out fake drunk tweets.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Hundreds Fired at Patch | SOTU Ratings Down | WaPo Expanding

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Report: Hundreds of Patch Employees Laid Off (JimRomenesko.com)
I’m told that hundreds — two tipsters claim two-thirds of the editorial staff — have been laid off by Patch’s new owner, Hale Global. Patch senior vice president/revenue Jim Lipuma has left the company. He wrote on his blog Wednesday: “I am unemployed. Long and short of it, I chose ‘Happiness.’ Now, I won’t go into details, as I have nothing but love for my organization and the people in it. It was an amazing journey, but today it ends.” FishbowlNY In a conference call from Leigh Zarelli Lewis, Patch’s COO, the news was laid out in blunt terms. Here’s how it went, according to a transcript: “Hale Global has decided which Patch employees will receive an offer of employment to move forward in accordance with their vision for Patch and which will not. Unfortunately, your role has been eliminated and you will no longer have a role at Patch and (Wednesday) will be your last day of employment with the company.” NYT Later in the morning, there was a conference call for employees who were staying on. Patch had roughly 450 employees before the layoffs Wednesday. In the call, remaining employees, including journalists as well as advertising sales employees and engineers, were told that all 900 Patch sites would remain open. Gawker Patch never made money. Even after it was bought by AOL in 2009, it didn’t make money. When AOL finally realized it was never going to make money, it first shuttered a bunch of Patch sites and then decided to get rid of it entirely. NY Post The move is a black eye for AOL CEO Tim Armstrong, who had co-founded the site as a side venture when he was still a Google executive and then acquired the site for AOL for a reported $7 million in 2009 shortly after he became its CEO. Poynter / MediaWire People who worked for Patch worked from home, on their own, but they had each other to reach out to, former Patch editor Anthony Leone told Poynter via phone. That network has held up through the rounds of layoffs. “We’re still helping each other out,” he said. “Most of the people there have never met face to face at all.”

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Rep. Grimm Threatens NY1 | Time Inc. to Cut 500+ | Medium Raises $25M

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Rep. Michael Grimm Threatens an NY1 Reporter (NYT)
Footage showed Representative Michael G. Grimm physically threatening a reporter in the Capitol, shining a harsh light on the embattled Staten Island Republican in the hours after President Obama’s State of the Union address in Washington on Tuesday. Grimm can be heard telling Michael Scotto, a reporter for NY1, “I’ll break you in half” in footage broadcast by the network. Moments earlier, Grimm had walked away from an interview when Scotto began asking him questions about allegations of campaign finance violations. NY1 Grimm’s threats came at the end of a brief interview in which he discussed the president’s speech, calling the address “divisive.” Scotto then tried to ask the congressman about the ongoing federal investigation into his 2010 campaign fundraising: “And just finally before we let you go, we haven’t had a chance to talk about some of the…” Scotto began before Grimm cut him off. “I’m not speaking to you off-topic, this is only about the president,” said Grimm, before walking off camera. “So Congressman Michael Grimm does not want to talk about some of the allegations concerning his campaign finances,” Scotto said before tossing back to the station. But as the camera continued to roll, Grimm walked back up to Scotto and began speaking to him in a low voice. HuffPost Grimm explained his actions in a statement to the Huffington Post: “I was extremely annoyed because I was doing NY1 a favor by rushing to do their interview first in lieu of several other requests. The reporter knew that I was in a hurry and was only there to comment on the State of the Union, but insisted on taking a disrespectful and cheap shot at the end of the interview, because I did not have time to speak off-topic. I verbally took the reporter to task and told him off, because I expect a certain level of professionalism and respect, especially when I go out of my way to do that reporter a favor. I doubt that I am the first member of Congress to tell off a reporter, and I am sure I won’t be the last.” Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Scotto, who covers Capitol Hill for the New York-based news channel, referred a request for comment to NY1 political director Robert Hardt. “It is extremely disturbing when anyone threatens one of our reporters — let alone a U.S. Congressman,” Hardt told Politico in an email.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Netflix Soars | AP Bans Photoshopper | Layoffs at TiVo

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Netflix’s Momentum Continues With 2.33 Million New U.S. Customers in Q4 (The Verge)
Netflix revealed its fourth quarter earnings Wednesday, capping off a banner year that saw the streaming service surpass HBO in subscriber count and earn critical acclaim for its original programming. In Q4, the company handily beat Wall Street expectations with revenue of $1.18 billion and earnings per share of $0.79. During the same period last year (before viewers had streamed a single episode of House of Cards), Netflix earned 13 cents per share on revenue of $945 million. Bloomberg Businessweek Netflix said Wednesday that it expects to sign up another 2.25 million subscribers in the first quarter, with “years of member growth ahead of us,” according to a company letter to shareholders. Netflix shares soared nearly 18 percent in trading after the market’s close, following a 1.5 percent gain to $333.73 in the regular session. NYT The strong growth came even though the service did not add a prominent, exclusive program like the drama House of Cards. One new animated series, TurboFAST, was introduced and the quarter contained the second season of the service’s initial drama series, Lilyhammer. But Netflix did maintain much of its media momentum by being prominently mentioned in award nominations and end-of-the-year best lists. The Guardian Netflix has been experimenting with different subscriber options including different streaming offerings and a lower-priced $6.99 plan for new U.S. customers to get a single stream of standard definition video. On a call with analysts Reed Hastings, chief executive officer, said eventually he would like to have “three simple options to fit everyone’s taste”. He said the company had no plans to run advertising, as does rival Hulu.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Cuts at Kushner Papers | Time Warner Sells HQ | Manjoo to NYT

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Layoffs at OC Register, Riverside Press-Enterprise (LA Times / Money & Co.)
Significant layoffs hit the newsrooms Thursday at the Orange County Register and Riverside Press-Enterprise, a troubling sign for the Aaron Kushner-owned publications. Exact numbers have not been released at the Register, although the cuts there are reported to number roughly 35 people. The paper’s editor, Ken Brusic, and most other top editorial managers have departed, according to multiple sources in the newsroom who asked not to be named because they were not authorized to speak. LA Times The elimination of 71 employees, many of them seasoned journalists, marks a sharp reversal by Kushner, who controls Freedom Communications Inc., which owns both papers. The former greeting card executive had spent much of the last 18 months growing his publications, acquiring additional news outlets and hiring more than 100 reporters and editors in the process. LA Observed It’s all about restructuring for the future, including the Register‘s upcoming invasion of Los Angeles County, Kushner says. The “content team,” as he puts it, is now 172 people larger than when he arrived, Kushner writes. Donna Wares, previously announced as editor-in-charge of the LA Register, will become managing editor. Poynter / MediaWire Rob Curley is the new editor of the Register. He replaces Brusic, who the Register says is “stepping down as part of a reorganization of the newspaper’s newsroom.”

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Martha Stewart Axes 100 | Twitter Faces Backlash | SNL Seeks Black Comic

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Martha Stewart Axed 100 Staffers (NY Post)
The ax started swinging early Thursday morning as home-entertainment diva Martha Stewart fired about 100 people from her namesake company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. It is the first major move since scrap-metal executive Daniel Dienst was tapped to be the new CEO in late October, sparking speculation — now realized — about major cutbacks. NY Post / Media Ink The layoffs, coming only a week and a half before Christmas, unnerved employees, many of whom left in tears, carrying their belongings in Martha Stewart bags. Stewart spent last week in Miami at Art Basel, the winter playground of the beautiful people, where dozens of private jets landed to party and peruse the international art market. FishbowlNY The downsizing will impact about 25 percent of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia’s workforce. So if you work there, and were planning on getting Dienst or Stewart a present, perhaps a better idea would be donating money in their names to The Human Fund. WSJ The job cuts follow years of weak financial performance at the company, which has lost money in all but one year of the past 10 due to declines in its TV business and print magazine ad revenue. One person familiar with the layoffs said they were made to bring the company more in line with its current revenues, which have declined sharply in recent years. Adweek One Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia staffer described the current office atmosphere as “really awful,” adding, “It’s really scary and terrible right before the holidays.”

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Layoffs at Time Inc. | AllThingsD’s NBCU Deal | Fox News Exec’s Pay Out

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Layoffs Ahead at Time Inc. (Capital New York)
Time Inc. staffers were informed Monday that layoffs lie ahead in the New Year, Capital has learned. The publishing giant has implemented cuts in recent years while reining in costs. Less than a year ago, 500 jobs were slashed from the company, which owns magazines including Time, Sports Illustrated and People. During Time Inc.’s quarterly management meeting Monday morning, which convened the company’s top executives and other high-level employees, chief content officer Norm Pearlstine confirmed during an interview with Time managing editor Nancy Gibbs that the cuts will continue next year, according to three sources who were present. Ad Age / Media News Contrary to a report over the weekend, the spinoff is still on track for the second quarter of 2014, according to Time Inc. CEO Joe Ripp, who appeared at the meeting along with Pearlstine and CFO Jeff Bairstow. minOnline In third-quarter 2013, Time Inc. revenue fell to “$813 million from $838 million [in third-quarter 2012], which is part of a pattern that extends back at least to 2008,” according to a recent document filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission that was a preliminary to the initial public offering. Adweek Fortune has a meager online presence, having been a channel of JV partner CNNMoney.com over the course of their eight-year partnership. (Fortune doesn’t say what its dedicated traffic is, but one person familiar with the business estimated it to be around 2 million monthly uniques.) Come next May, that partnership is set to dissolve, leaving Fortune on its own to start a new financial news website.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Mandela Dies | AOL Lays Off 20 | Rolling Stone Expands

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Nelson Mandela Dies at 95
(TVNewser)
Anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela, the first black president of South Africa, has died at the age of 95. His death was announced by Jacob Zuma, the current president of South Africa. NBC News and CBS both produced special reports beginning at 4:45 p.m. ET, with Brian Williams anchoring on NBC and Scott Pelley anchoring on CBS. David Muir anchored a special report on ABC News at 4:46 p.m. ET. On the cable networks, CNN joined Zuma’s press conference at 4:44 p.m. ET. MSNBC began broadcasting NBC News’ special report at 4:45 p.m. ET, and Fox News joined Zuma’s press conference at 4:46 p.m. ET. Variety The news cablers went into wall-to-wall coverage mode. CNN bumped the planned premiere of its documentary An Unreal Dream: The Michael Morton Story for a primetime block anchored by Anderson Cooper. CNN also has correspondent Robyn Curnow on the ground in Johannesburg. Poynter / MediaWire The Associated Press sent a “flash” alert to members Thursday about Mandela’s death. Such alerts are used “on the rare occasion when an APNewsAlert represents a transcendent development — one likely to be a top story of the year,” the AP Stylebook says. THR The death of Mandela dominated headlines on newspapers and newscasts around the globe Friday as the world mourned one of the history’s greatest freedom fighters and statesmen. UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon honored Mandela as a “giant for justice,” German chancellor Angela Merkel called him a “shining example,” while Indian media compared the late South African leader to Mahatma Gandhi. HuffPost Reporters swarmed Mandela’s home before Zuma’s announcement, according to ITV’s Rohit Kachroo. Lydia Polgreen, the New York Times‘ Johannesburg bureau chief, tweeted that “news broadcasters are deeply emotional, holding back tears as they speak about Mandela’s death.” National Journal The New Yorker, like the vast majority of global media outlets, was ready for Mandela’s death Thursday night. And they prepared a powerful cover tribute to the late South African president. The cover, which will appear next week, is titled “Madiba” and was drawn by Kadir Nelson. Nelson is also the author of a children’s book about Mandela. GalleyCat The activist and world leader was an inspired writer and the author of dozens of books.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Tribune Co Cuts 700 | NYT‘s D.C. Staff Shakeup | AOL Kills Winamp

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Tribune Co. Reorganizes Publishing Unit, Cutting Nearly 700 Jobs (Chicago Tribune)
Tribune Co. announced a restructuring of its publishing business Wednesday to focus on its digital efforts and streamline operations, resulting in nearly 700 job losses across the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and six other daily newspapers. TVSpy The layoffs, which did not affect the company’s television stations, come at the end of an eventful year for Tribune. The company emerged from bankruptcy in January with a plan to shift focus to its television stations, naming television executive Liguori CEO just weeks later. LA Times / Money & Co The reorganization is “not by any means a Hail Mary pass,” the company’s president and CEO, Robert Liguori, said, stressing that the newspapers are profitable. NYT The cuts, which represent about 6 percent of the company’s 11,000 employees, will affect mostly its business side. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media “Unfortunately, organizing around functional lines rather than maintain what we’re doing locally, there is going to be some staff reductions,” said Liguori. “We are not going to be reducing any of our frontline reporters. Over time there will be some small reductions on the editorial side, but we want to maintain our best-in-class local journalism.” Poynter / MediaWire In its most recent financial report, Tribune noted it had eliminated 360 positions in 2013 across the company, which also has a broadcasting division. The reductions came “primarily in publishing,” the company said. NY Post “The move anticipates a tough 2014,” said Ken Doctor, an analyst and founder of Newsonomics. “Tribune is battening down the hatches, looking at another, similar high single-digit decline in print ads. Massive cutting is the only way to preserve meager profit.”

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