MTV News, the news division of the iconic music video network, is shutting down after 36 years. This move is part of a larger restructuring effort by parent company Paramount, which will also see a reduction of its US workforce by 25%. The decision was communicated in a memo by Chris McCarthy, who heads Paramount Media Networks, MTV and Showtime.
In his memo, McCarthy cited broader economic headwinds as the reason for the decision to reduce the domestic team. He noted that despite the company’s success in streaming, it still feels the pressure to cut costs and become more efficient in its approach to business. As a result, some units in the company are being eliminated altogether.
The closure of MTV News marks the end of a remarkable rise that began in the 1980s when Rolling Stone editor-turned-TV host Kurt Loder joined the network and launched its “The Week in Rock” program. During the ’90s, MTV News provided an alternative to traditional cable news that appealed to young Americans.
The decision to shut down MTV News comes on the heels of similar moves by other media companies. Last month, BuzzFeed announced the elimination of its award-winning news division, while Vice Media canceled its acclaimed “Vice News Tonight” as part of a broad restructuring.
The cuts at Paramount, which McCarthy called a “strategic realignment,” aim to streamline units and reduce overall costs. The move comes as nearly every major news, entertainment, and technology company has been forced to slash its workforce in recent months due to a slumping advertising market and other industry challenges.
The closure of MTV News is a sad moment for many who grew up with the network and its news coverage. However, it is also a sign of the times and a reminder of the challenges facing the media industry today. As companies like Paramount continue to adapt to changing market conditions, and news personalities like Tucker Carlson move their shows to Twitter, it remains to be seen what the future holds for news and entertainment media.