TVSpy reported yesterday E.W. Scripps was laying off people at its local stations.
Since then, readers have been posting a list of who’s been let go on our comment section. We checked back with Scripps to get more of an idea about what was happening.
We again asked for a specific number of those laid off. Valerie Miller, Scripps’s corporate communications manager, repeated what VP Carolyn Pione Micheli told us yesterday, some of those laid off will move into other positions within Scripps, so there was no specific number to give.
The press release they gave us about the layoff says, “As we often do, we assessed the roles that have lived within our newsrooms for years and have made some adjustments to better support our multi-platform future. That means reallocating more resources to content creation.”
TVSpy asked what “reallocating more resources to content creation” meant. Miller told us “[It] means we want to have more people involved in actual newsgathering – out in the field – especially for investigative coverage on a daily basis.” Which sounds like a shift from having people at desks to having people holding cameras and reporting on the street, with a focus on investigative reporting.
Tipsters tell us WFTS in Tampa laid off the manager of the investigative unit, the promotions manager and the special projects producer; while WEWS in Cleveland let go eight, including a creative services writer/producer; and KGTV in San Diego let three go: an investigative executive producer, the lead assignment editor and the GM’s administrative assistant.
Scripps reported operating revenue growth the fourth quarter of almost 28 percent, driven in part by political advertising.
In a quote on the press release, Scripps chairman, president and CEO Rich Boehne said, “We are focused on digital video, and in the fourth quarter, we got a big boost when we added the Newsy video players onto our local newspaper and television websites.”
Boehne added, “Digital video is a fast-growing marketplace that supports premium rates for pre-roll advertising. The large and growing Newsy audiences give us the opportunity to take advantage of those new revenue sources.”