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Job cuts at Channel 10

As a media maven, I was rather surprised to learn some time back that TV stations -- and not just newspapers -- are being hard hit by the migration of advertising to the Internet.

As Matt writes, job cuts at WJAR reflect the hand of corporate parent Media General, but the larger environment is certainly a factor as well.

A source tells me that 2 administrative staff are getting laid off and an additional 5 more staff members will soon follow them.  These kinds of layoffs for Rhode Island's television news giant comes as a surprise to many.

However, the reason for these layoffs may have little to do with the ratings or quality of news at Channel 10.  NBC 10's owner is Media General Inc. out of Richmond, Virginia, which owns 22 other television stations and 25 other newspapers.  In the first quarter of 2008, they reported a loss of a whopping $20.3 million.  The company attributed these losses to "continued weak revenues."

These layoffs will likely mean more stress on the newsroom and less ability to cover Rhody's most pressing stories.  Unfortunately, this is yet one more sign of how the centralization of control of the media in far-away corporations harms one of the greatest institutions of our democracy.    

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