Morning Media Newsfeed: Cuts Hit CNN, HLN | Nielsen Revision Puts Nightly News on Top

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Layoffs Begin at CNN (TVNewser)
Layoffs have begun at CNN. As many as 300, or 8 percent, of CNN’s workforce is being cut in Atlanta, Washington, D.C., New York and Los Angeles. FishbowlDC Up to 28 positions are rumored to be eliminated Tuesday and Wednesday from CNN’s Washington bureau. In August, Turner sent out an email to staff including those at CNN, offering a voluntary separation program to employees 55 and over who have worked for Turner for 10 or more years. Mashable CNN has cut Christiane Amanpour’s entire staff in New York as part of the cable news channel’s restructuring. Amanpour, CNN’s chief international correspondent and anchor of a nightly foreign affairs program, will continue to produce international news segments for the network. TVNewser Jane Velez Mitchell’s nightly HLN show has been canceled as part of the cuts. Velez Mitchell will be leaving the network, as will the staff of the show — in all about 15 HLN employees. Capital New York In addition, CNN has shuttered its entertainment news unit, with some staff being laid off and others being folded into other departments. In addition, Darius Walker, VP and Northeast bureau chief, will leave the company. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media The cuts are hitting all of CNN’s bureaus, with several back-office and corporate layoffs hitting Atlanta last week. Turner Broadcasting is restructuring under a “2020” plan, which will cut the company’s total workforce by 10 percent, eliminating nearly 1,500 positions across their channels. CNN is expected to reduce its workforce by about 8 percent. More layoffs are expected Wednesday.

With Nielsen Ratings Revision, NBC Nightly News Winning Streak Continues (TVNewser)
Revised Nielsen data for the week of Sept. 29, 2014 shows NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams was No. 1 in total viewers while World News Tonight With David Muir remains No. 1 in the adults 25-54 demo. HuffPost / AP The ratings reversal is the most visible example of a software error that Nielsen said had affected its measurement of television audiences since March. Because of the error, in many cases Nielsen had overestimated ABC’s viewership in comparison to its rivals. Variety NBC’s decades-long winning streak over ABC and CBS in the evening-news wars remains intact as a result of the revision. Though ABC believed World News Tonight won more viewers overall than NBC’s Nightly News for the week ended Sept. 29 — potentially marking the first time in about five years when the NBC show was not the evening newscast preferred by more total viewers — it turns out ABC was misled. Revised data provided by NBC state that an average of 8.283 million people watched Nightly News that week, while an average of 8.113 million tuned into ABC’s World News. Previous data suggested ABC had attracted an average of 8.416 million while NBC had notched an average of 8.25 million. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media That being said, ABC has been steadily catching up in ratings and consistently winning the 25-54 demo since before Diane Sawyer handed over the anchor chair to Muir. Even with the recalibrated ratings, World News still won the demo for the week of Sept. 29, with 2.07 million viewers versus NBC’s 1.94 million.

BuzzFeed’s Growth Czar Now Its Publisher (Re/code)
For the last couple of years, Dao Nguyen has been the person in charge of data and growth at BuzzFeed, which means she has done a very big job very well — the site says it’s now attracting 150 million users a month. So CEO Jonah Peretti is giving her a bigger task: The 40 year old is now BuzzFeed’s publisher. FishbowlNY Nguyen was promoted from VP of growth to publisher, a new role at the company. NYT In a memo to the staff, Peretti said the title of publisher at BuzzFeed would not mean the same thing it does for other media companies. “Dao is a new type of publisher,” he wrote. “She isn’t the heir to a newspaper baron and she won’t be responsible for the business, selling ads or physical newsstand distribution. Instead, she’ll lead publishing for the social Web, in the most modern sense.” Peretti’s memo added that Nguyen would “oversee tech, product, data and everything related to our publishing platform” and would be on an equal footing with the company’s president and editor. GigaOM In many ways, Nguyen’s job sounds like what a technology company would describe as “head of platform” or “head of product,” in the sense that she is going to be looking at all of the non-editorial aspects of the business. And this is fitting, because as Chris Dixon — a partner at Andreessen Horowitz, which led BuzzFeed’s recent $50 million fundraising round — described it, the company is more of a technology platform than it is a traditional media company.