Morning Media Newsfeed: CNN Lays Off 40 | Yglesias Departs Slate | Businessweek Cuts Back?

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CNN Lays Off More Than 40 Journalists (The Financial Times)
CNN has laid off more than 40 senior journalists in its newsgathering operation — including a pregnant producer who was two weeks away from giving birth to twins — as part of a reorganization of the business under Jeff Zucker. The lay-offs at CNN and HLN, its sister network, were concentrated in Washington, Atlanta and Los Angeles at the end of 2013. Poynter / MediaWire The cuts “coincide with changes to the network’s programming,” Matthew Garrahan reports in the Financial Times. Zucker “has hired new presenters and diversified CNN’s output, adding documentary and reality series to its traditional live news coverage.” TVNewser At the time of the layoffs — which number in the dozens — a source told TVNewser there would be no reduction in headcount in the cities most affected. Our source says changes in Los Angeles are related to a planned expansion of the entertainment unit. In recent weeks CNN has churned out entertainment-focused specials, including an hour on Amy Poehler and Tina Fey, and has increased awards season red carpet specials. The Guardian / Greenslade Blog CNN recently hit a 20-year low in prime time ratings in the U.S., attracting an average of just 78,000 viewers across the whole day and 98,000 in prime time. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Zucker recently announced plans to dedicate more of CNN’s air time to documentaries and unscripted reality series like Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown.

Slate’s Matt Yglesias Joining Ezra Klein Venture (HuffPost / The Backstory)
Matt Yglesias, a prominent blogger and Slate’s “Moneybox” columnist, is leaving the site at the end of February to join Ezra Klein’s new venture, according to a staff memo. Slate editor-in-chief David Plotz described Yglesias’ departure as “a great opportunity for him to found and create an exciting new venture, working in partnership with one of his closest friends, who’s also one of the best journalists around.” NY Observer “You may recall that our last Moneybox columnist, Annie Lowrey, left Slate to go off and marry Ezra Klein. Well, it’s happening again,” Plotz wrote. Although Lowrey actually left Slate to work for The New York Times, she and Klein did get married shortly after her departure from Slate. NYT Yglesias declined to provide details of his position, or of the venture. “There’s not much to say at this point,” he said by email Thursday, “other than that I’m very excited to be part of this team and we’re hoping to announce some more stuff in the near future. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Yglesias and Klein have been friends for some time and were both members of the so-called “Juicebox Mafia”: Young, liberal, Washington-based bloggers who came to notoriety toward the end of last decade. Needless to say no one in that group has achieved as much success as Klein, whose departure from the Post was announced earlier in the week.

Bloomberg L.P. Is ‘Totally Committed’ to Print (Capital New York)
Justin Smith has been taking a close look inside every nook and cranny of Bloomberg Media Group since becoming chief executive officer of the consumer-facing division of Bloomberg L.P. roughly four months ago. Smith has set up his desk on the fifth floor of Bloomberg L.P.’s Lexington Avenue headquarters, home of the company’s troubled television operation, Bloomberg TV. That is seen as the project that will require the most attention. But Smith has his eye on the magazine stable, too, and he has considered the possibility of reducing the frequency of its star player, Bloomberg Businessweek, according to sources familiar with his thinking.