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Atlanta-based Weather Channel hit with layoffs, cutting 7% of staff in ‘restructuring’

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About 75 to 80 people are being cut at The Weather Channel, a bulk of that coming from Atlanta headquarters, according to TVNewser.

A spokeswoman wouldn’t confirm that number but released this statement:

In late September we began an effort to reorganize our company into business units based around our customers and the products and services we create and deliver to them. This effort was recently concluded and has resulted in the elimination of positions in several divisions of the company. With these organizational changes and our new structure, TWCC is better positioned for future growth. Employees who are directly affected by this position elimination or reorganization have been informed and we are working closely with them through this period of transition.

Before the cutbacks, the company had 1,200 employees, 700 in Atlanta.

A number of on-air meteorologists have left recently as well, including Adam Berg and Jeff Morrow.

The network, which was purchased by NBCUniversal and two private equity firms in 2008, can still pull in strong ratings during hurricanes and other natural disasters but otherwise, its core regular viewers are modest.

During the week of October 8, the channel averaged 147,000 viewers at any given time, on par with networks such as CNBC, WE-TV and the Science Channel, according to Nielsen Research.

To gain more regular viewers, the network has added more reality programming such as “Coast Guard Atlanta” and “Ice Pilots.”

The company has seen massive growth on the mobile and tablet side in recent years.

Its iPad app is the second most downloaded app, behind only Apple iBooks, according to Apple,

In March 2012, comScore reported that the Weather Channel reached a quarter of all smartphone users, or 24.1 million people, ranked 13th overall, just behind the game Angry Birds. and ahead of ESPN. By August, Weather.com on the desktop reached 53 million users in August and 40 million on mobile web and apps.

Powell said the company has gone from a more centralized model to a decentralized one with business units such as sales, television, digital, international, distribution and communications.

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49 comments Add your comment

radiowxman

October 16th, 2012
1:57 pm

Sadly, this is becoming an annual event after Landmark sold TWC.

Paula

October 16th, 2012
2:03 pm

TWC has become unbearable to watch. I used to have TWC on every morning as I was getting ready for work. After watching that first episode of “Wake Up With Al”(which is simply horrendous), I switched over to Fox 5 and have been there ever since.

Vinnie

October 16th, 2012
2:13 pm

I love making lemonade out of lemons. I was laid off 30 days before Christmas last year so I know how it feels. I’m staffing several clients in the area that need good developers. Please email me at Vincent@eHire.com.

Chris

October 16th, 2012
2:13 pm

I turned on the other day to get the weather. Instead, it had a show on. Over the past half decade or so, TWC reminds me of MTV. Slowly weeding out weather for Tornado Chasers, Steel Erectors, etc.

BILLY MAYS HERE

October 16th, 2012
2:15 pm

“TORNADO ON THE GROUND!!!” –Every TWC show ever

gritsiam

October 16th, 2012
2:17 pm

the weather channel hardly does the weather anymore…..it is awful

Kaley Fornia

October 16th, 2012
2:35 pm

I wish they would go back to 1988 and watch those old tapes of how TWC used to be. That’s how I remember them. Today, it’s just more reality shows and pretty people. If you remember Bill Keneely, he now owns a Menchies Yogurt on Holcomb Bridge Rd in Roswell right in front of the Centennial Kroger. He was awesome and was laid off a few years ago. Stop by when he is there and he will talk your ears off about weather!

Splavistic

October 16th, 2012
2:39 pm

Goes to show that you can’t depend on a fickle company who caters to an even ficklier (word?:) audience for job security. Good luck to those who were let go.

Disgusted

October 16th, 2012
3:10 pm

Total bloodbath! Anyone with any connection to Landmark communications is GONE. They have idiots running the place and DO NOT care about the television side. If they did they would get that gorilla Stephanie Abrams off the air!

richard liquor

October 16th, 2012
3:25 pm

used to be a big fan when they actually told the weather,lost me when they started showing all those pre-recorded shows a million times

Stewie

October 16th, 2012
3:55 pm

What a tumble from consistently being rated as one of the best places to work in Atlanta in the early 2000s to a place where employees walk around in fear, wondering when and where the ax will fall next.

Very sad for those who found out that answer today.

Tuckergirl

October 16th, 2012
4:33 pm

Please get rid of Al and Abrams. Annoying as can be.

Would it be too much to just ask for the weather…since that IS in the name of the channel?

Jerry Foreman

October 16th, 2012
4:49 pm

Who wants to wake up with Al – Really!!!

Lauer Cantore

October 16th, 2012
4:55 pm

NBC Universal / Comcast is blowing up The Weather Channel, blowing up The Today Show. What’s next?! Loved TWC for years, I have a dog named Doppler. Simply put, I cannot watch it – awful.

Dum-Bass

October 16th, 2012
4:57 pm

Agree with several on here. Two of their biggest mistakes were going to way too many reality and recorded shows rather than showing the actual weather all the time, plus the hiring of Al Roker and pairing him with Stephanie Abrams. Those two get old real quick. I now use AccuWeather on my computer if I really want the weather and can get it anytime. NBC can screw up anything, even themselves!

TG

October 16th, 2012
4:58 pm

I stopped watching the TWC when they stopped doing the local weather. I used to LOVE turning at a certain time and actually seeing the local forecast and hearing that awesome, soothing classical or jazzy music in the background. I have no idea whose [un]bright idea it was to venture away from straight weather and into some weird entertainment zone. Just like HLN, TWC forgot what it was. All change is not positive change. They need to find some management that remembers what TWC was, and what it still should be at its core.

Idalis

October 16th, 2012
5:04 pm

Apparently its too much to expect TWC to actually provide the weather, at least within 3 mins! I actually have to go online to get a current forecast when I need it. With so many people mobile now, perhaps that’s what they expect instead of actual TWC watchers.

Tyreeq

October 16th, 2012
5:12 pm

When I want weather I can get it in seconds @ TWC’s website or any of the TV station websites.

Catching the weather forecast @ the actual Weather Channel is a matter of lucky timing. Seems like more often than not you come in at the middle of some long-winded feature story about clouds or rainbows or some such.

Power Squadron Wx Teacher

October 16th, 2012
5:42 pm

If they’d just follow their name and quit “entertaining”, ratings might go up. Put only the true meteorologists back in front of the camera. Its weather, not a Broadway show.
GE has a history of reorganizing and killing motivation by breaking apart a working entity into business units that compete with one another. . My guess is GE will soon move TWC to China.

PM

October 16th, 2012
6:07 pm

The problem with weather is local -you can stick your head outside and see what’s going on- and national -everybody has weather coverage now. And it’s on everybody’s phone. My phone came with two different weather apps, neither of which I use. But they’re there.

The thing that makes TWC unique is itself relatively generic. But running reality shows is also generic and not the answer at all. TWC’s value-add comes from what they do best, which also what they are doing less and less of.

Pity the Science Channel ratings are apparently so low. It’s pretty much the first place I go to see what’s on. But nobody else is watching “How do they do it” or “Into the Wormhole” hmm.

As for what NBC will screw up next, THAT would the US coverage of Formula 1 racing starting next year. There is almost no limit to what they can do to make it unwatchable.

Bullwinkle J. Moose

October 16th, 2012
8:32 pm

Stopped watching TWC when they got rid of the adorable Kristina Abernathy.

Frankie says

October 16th, 2012
11:06 pm

Its a company with no direction and it shows

SAWB

October 17th, 2012
12:49 am

Like a lot of folks they have fallen victim to the “Celebrity Journalist”. They could save money and improve quality by getting rid of a lot of those folks (Al, Stephanie…) and focusing on what made them a hit to begin with. Basic good weather related programming.

A Different Jeff

October 17th, 2012
8:21 am

The only things I enjoy watching on TWC nowadays are Local on the 8’s and Danielle Banks.

RDavid

October 17th, 2012
8:35 am

At least Accuweather is around, since it actually shows/discusses the weather. TWC is too interested in rescue shows that have little to do with weather.

BravesDawg

October 17th, 2012
9:39 am

I use to love the weather channel, so much so my family would tease me about it. I do not like the recorded shows. I tuned in to watch the weather. Now when I turn it on the weather is not on. And yes I miss Kristina! Lots of other talented people who made the weather channel feel like I was part of it are gone too. SAD!

Steve Martin

October 17th, 2012
9:49 am

At least they didn’t get rid of Paul J. WAKE UP PAUL!

marygrace

October 17th, 2012
10:05 am

Sad news for those .who have lost their jobs. I vote to rid the mornings of ‘Wake up with Al’ He is very annoying and his salary would probably have saved several other jobs! I am watching my local channels now in the morning…..from a former regular morning viewer.

skeeter

October 17th, 2012
12:05 pm

It’s the advancement in technology folks! Yes,I watched 10+ years ago, but today, if I hear it thunder I can go to wsbtv interactive radar and see the storm over my house. Matter of fact, I can see if it’s storming at my brother’s house in PA. ADVANCEMENT IN TECHNOLOGY

Donna

October 17th, 2012
1:42 pm

have to admit that the recorded shows are tiresome and there’s alot less weather reporting on TWC. Al Roker lucked out landing a spot because of his affiliation with NBC, but NBC needs to wake up and smell the ratings!

IMHO

October 17th, 2012
3:54 pm

Hope the powers that be at TWC are reading these posts. Less expensive and more honest than their consultants or in-house “experts.”

Don Johnson

October 17th, 2012
7:14 pm

Yeah…, everybody’s correct in these comments…., there’s no reason for TWC to exist anymore, cap it one time in the back of the head and LET IT BE!!!!

M. Pease

October 17th, 2012
7:18 pm

I used to watch TWC a lot. However, they started adding programming that took away the advantage of having my local forecast available to me every 10 minutes. Also, I don’t care to wake up with Al Roker every morning. I could be wrong, but it’s my understanding that he is merely a TV personality and not a meteorologist. Obviously, NBC made the decision to give him that morning show. He’s a goofball. If NBC wants to save some money, perhaps they should ax Al and Matt Lauer, who are getting paid way more than they’re worth and keep some of TWC employees. I feel bad for all the staff that have been laid off. A sad sign of the times.

Oxwinkle

October 17th, 2012
7:26 pm

Hmmmm….this might be a good time for another network to start up a 24/7 weather channel that actually has weather reports.

FOX WEATHER CHANNEL – All Weather All The Time With Hot Looking Meteorologists!!

Red

October 17th, 2012
8:03 pm

When TWC started, they had an edge in technology — 24 hour cable. When I worked there, we grew distribution, viewership and ad revenue dramatically – for many years. It was privately owned and a great place to work.
Now, your smart phone can provide exactly the information you seek – instantly. The network has lost its mission, as well as its technological advantage. It is run by corporate bureaucrats. And a lot of good people are on the street.
The rise & fall of a media business….

Ed Carter

October 17th, 2012
9:07 pm

I grew up watching the weather channel.I am now 30 years old.My job critically depends on the weather every day. It seems every time I tune in to get my local forecast,I am greeted with another weather reality show that I could care less about.It’s sad to see even the weather channel turn into this format.All these shows stink,and are unwatchable.Reminds me of how Mtv is called music television and thats the last thing you would find on it today.

Joe

October 17th, 2012
9:29 pm

In the first place, we don’t have a “weather” channel anymore and haven’t had ever since the “global warming” group took over. Too bad. John Coleman started a great channel and now its gotten unwatchable.. to bad.

FedUp

October 18th, 2012
1:53 am

The problem is they have a woman running the television network that doesn’t have a clue!

Tim

October 18th, 2012
2:16 am

It absolutely SUCKS when I turn to TWC looking to find out the forecast, and they have one of those stupid weather shows on. NBC finds a way to ruin everything. Al can go, but keep Stephanie. She has nice curves and a nice rack. That’s gotta count for something.

TheLazyComic

October 18th, 2012
2:20 am

Don’t ya just love long-winded, mumbo-jumbo excuses corporates are so good at spitting out when they’re about to go on a screw-a-thon. It’s always from the lips of some corporate spokes-mouth… who I’d love to hold their heads under water until the bubbles stopped.

A Different Jeff

October 18th, 2012
8:20 am

@ Oxwinkle: Great idea! Dagmar Midcap can be their first hire!

Mr. Dino

October 18th, 2012
2:09 pm

Please bring back the weather only-too many weather stories.
Some weather stories are good and others are… who cares how to shot an large iceberg.

Chesapeake, VA

FedUp

October 18th, 2012
2:38 pm

KC, I didn’t say CEO, I said HEAD OF PROGRAMMING.

FedUp

October 18th, 2012
2:41 pm

Well the CEO knows nothing either,

Jimmy Baron

October 18th, 2012
5:35 pm

Two problems: Jim Cantore is overexposed and that show about windmills is the worst one yet. Every move those windmill installers make is “near death”. LOL comical.

Stuart

October 18th, 2012
6:52 pm

TWC also got political. That is why there is CNN, FOX and MSNBC. Give me the weather not the latest news.

Jeff

October 18th, 2012
8:58 pm

People, it’s weather we’re talking about. Not that serious.

WhatYes

October 19th, 2012
1:21 pm

FedUp, you said “woman running the television network” not head of programming.

steve

October 19th, 2012
3:06 pm

The weather channel is nothing more than a joke. Might as well call them the worthless channel.