Layoffs Keep Coming
By Michael Malone -- Broadcasting & Cable, 7/6/2008 8:00:00 PM
Summertime hasn't been too hot for employees at television stations. Layoffs have been rampant the past few weeks, and are expected to continue amidst a dim economic forecast.
Mid-June saw a 7.5% staff reduction across the Newport Television stations, which meant about 162 casualties among the 56 outlets. Then WRCB Chattanooga, owned by Sarkes Tarzian, eliminated 10 jobs. “We're reorganizing our maintenance and production departments in recognition of the fact that so much broadcasting equipment has become computerized,” president and general manager Tom Tolar explains.
Next was Tribune's KTLA, which laid off eight. “We're reconfiguring how we do things,” says KTLA VP of Programming and Marketing John Moczulski. “We're evaluating what our goals are and what the jobs are.”
Six were axed last week at Raycom's Cleveland duopoly, WOIO and WUAB, and eight at NBC Local Media's KNTV San Jose (including four on-air positions). Media General's WFLA Tampa will reportedly be 10 jobs lighter by the end of the year.
Earlier in the month, Meredith Corp. clipped 120 jobs, mostly on the publishing side. Media General has cut 11% since January 2007, Barrington Broadcasting vowed to make do with 8% fewer employees, Young Broadcasting is cutting 11%, and CBS trimmed some 120 at its O&Os in late March.
“Virtually every group is rethinking and reengineering what they do to create content in the multiplatform world. The infrastructure has to change when you're doing business in different ways,” says Frank N. Magid TV President Steve Ridge.
While many would classify the layoffs as cutting into bone, insiders say the reductions are far from over—especially with the economic picture remaining dark. “People are realizing this is not going to be the year everyone thought it was going to be,” says SmithGeiger Senior VP Mark Toney. “I think almost everyone's vulnerable to it.”
I'm sure that this news will make many of Broadcasting & Cable readers
smile. You know the ones. The guys in the suits who are only really
worried about their stock options. The ones who don't mind that gas will
soon be $6.00 a gal. The ones who scrimp on equipment and then can't
figure out why those damn engineers can't fix it. The ones who decided
that while they need a new Ferrari the tech's shouldn't get any health
insurance unless they kick in 45% of the cost. Yeah hell lay em all off get
a computer to run the place.
Ted Victor Technician - 7/7/2008 8:45:00 PM EDT
No related content found.
No Top Articles
Digital Rapids provides market-leading software and hardware solutions, technology and expertise for transforming live and on-demand video to reach wider audiences on the latest viewing platforms more efficiently, more effectively and more profitably. Empowering applications from..more