It’s the end of an era. MTV News has officially shuttered after three decades amid mass layoffs at its parent company, Paramount.
In an internal memo obtained by Variety, Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios and Paramount Media Networks confirmed that they would be slashing 25% of the total U.S. workforce across the media groups.
“This is a tough yet important strategic realignment of our group,” said Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios and Paramount Media Networks President Chris McCarthy. “Through the elimination of some units and by streamlining others, we will be able to reduce costs and create a more effective approach to our business as we move forward.”
The news comes amid the bundling of Paramount+ with Showtime for streaming.
The majority of the layoffs will affect Paramount-owned networks, including Nick, Comedy Central, CMT, Smithsonian, Logo, Pop TV, TV Land, Paramount Network, and MTV.
“It’s not something we take lightly,” McCarthy wrote to employees. “We have some of the most passionate and dedicated team members, who bring their full selves to drive our brands and business forward. This is why it’s so difficult to say goodbye to our friends and colleagues.”
MTV News has been around for 36 years, cementing itself in the late ’80s as a hybrid network for those seeking an intersection between pop culture, politics, and hard news.
The network launched the careers of anchors Kurt Loder and Tabitha Soren, who broke earth-shattering pop culture moments in real-time, such as the deaths of Kurt Cobain and Tupac.
Social media users took to Twitter to lament the loss of the iconic division, posting their favorite clips and reminiscing about how MTV News helped shape television entertainment news.
In honor of the end of MTV News. The best moment of pure chaos
pic.twitter.com/h8dzp4LIQh— sam greisman (@SAMGREIS) May 10, 2023
If you lived in the era of Kurt Loder and Tabitha Soren @ MTV News, you have lived. So many huge moments in pop culture: Kurt Cobain, Biggie, and 2Pac passings, Courtney Love crashing Madonna’s interview, etc. https://t.co/viCyU6lSIg pic.twitter.com/rmdnRDYVfK— Carlos (@carlosjharris) May 9, 2023
Here’s Kurt Loder announcing Kurt Cobain’s death on MTV News on Apr. 8, 1994.
This was how millions of people found out Kurt was gone. pic.twitter.com/lIgj4TAbmt— Mike Beauvais (@MikeBeauvais) May 9, 2023
MTV News got an entire generation of Gen Xers and older millennials to start paying attention to global events, politics, the world. Kurt Loder & the MTV News crew expanded a part of my brain that living in small-town rural America never could. https://t.co/ZehpNmx6jD— Alisha Grauso (@AlishaGrauso) May 9, 2023
In it’s prime, MTV News was one of the most influential programs in existence.
Necessary programming that launched a thousand ships for more several generations.— brandon / jinx / big jinx (@brandonjinx) May 9, 2023
Last week, Paramount Global, which owns MTV and its affiliated networks, reported weak earnings for Q2 2023, which sent shares tumbling nearly 28%.
The stock saw its worst day since CBS merged with Viacom in December 2019.
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