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CNN Announces 100 Job Cuts And New Digital Subscription

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CNN has revealed plans to cut around 100 jobs and introduce its first CNN.com subscription product later this year.

It is part of its strategy to reduce dependence on its cable TV channel.

CNN CEO Mark Thompson told employees the network’s television newsgathering and digital news divisions would merge into one unit.

He said: “We recognize its potentially enormous impact on the individuals affected.”

The cuts will affect CNN’s workforce of over 3,500 employees and will be implemented across the company.

Since taking over in October, Thompson has prioritized enhancing CNN’s digital offerings amid a decline in its traditional cable business. 

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Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN’s parent, launched CNN Max last year.

It’s a live-news streaming service featuring some of the network’s top content on its Max platform.

Thompson mentioned in the memo that CNN aims to build a billion-dollar-plus digital business. 

While details about the forthcoming digital subscription product were not disclosed, Thompson indicated it would “be significantly built out of CNN.com.”

The memo also hinted that future digital subscription products would include news and analysis and paid lifestyle journalism offerings.

During his initial address to staff last fall, Thompson said traditional TV “can no longer define us,” asserting that CNN is “nowhere near ready for the future.”

CNN’s prime-time viewership has recently plummeted to decade-low levels despite a boost from last month’s presidential debate.

It attracted 9.53 million viewers on CNN’s platforms. 

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More than 50 million people watched the debate, which was also simulcast on other networks. 

However, CNN’s prime-time viewership returned to its low levels the following day.

Other cable news networks have experienced viewership declines since the pandemic, though not as severe as CNN’s drop.

Warner Bros. Discovery also plans to implement a small number of layoffs within its entertainment operations in the coming weeks.

It is part of ongoing efforts to streamline operations and reduce redundancies. 

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