CNN seems to continue paying the price for apparently being out of sync with most Americans. The network lost credibility when several COVID, anti-Trump, and pro-Hunter Biden pieces were proven inaccurate, and former President Donald Trump labeled the network a propagator of “fake news.”
A new CEO firing high-profile personalities such as Brian Stelter, Chris Cuomo, and Jeff Zucker and reassigning Don Lemon has not slowed the ratings slide.
Many eyes have been on CNN’s new CEO, Chris Licht, who took the reins in April. After warning that “mass layoffs” may be necessary, employees received an ominous email on Wednesday, noting that many would be notified on Thursday that their time with the network had come to an end.
The Western Journal reported that “CNN is officially in meltdown mode, and there’s no telling what could happen from this point.”
Licht’s “all-staff memo” stated: “It will be a difficult time for everyone,” warning that many will be impacted by coming layoffs.
Licht continued: “Our people are the heart and soul of this organization. It is incredibly hard to say goodbye to any one member of the CNN team, much less many. I recently described this process as a gut punch, because I know that is how it feels for all of us.”
“If your job has been impacted, you will learn more through an in-person meeting or via Zoom, depending on your location. In those meetings, you will receive information specific to you about notice period or any severance that would apply, and your anticipated last day,” Licht added.
CNN senior contributor Oliver Darcy posted Licht’s memo to Twitter, writing:
“CNN boss Chris Licht informs employees in an all-staff note that layoffs are underway. Licht says those being notified today are largely paid contributors and then tomorrow CNN ‘will notify impacted employees.’ Licht will then provide an update to staff afterward.”
Critics of the left-leaning network showed little empathy. Reminding Democrats that the Biden administration said laid-off coal miners could always transition to the green or solar industries, conservative commentator Greg Price tweeted:
“Big day for the solar panel industry.”
Political analyst and former Fox News host Megyn Kelly tweeted that former CEO Jeff Zucker is responsible for taking the network into the “partisan toilet.”
“This is the fault of Jeff Zucker, who took CNN from a once solid brand into the partisan toilet. It didn’t have to be this way, but he let his personal animus for Trump blind him to what a news org is supposed to be & there were severe consequences to that.”
Licht prepped employees for possible layoffs last month, writing that changes were necessary and that “changes would come soon.”
Licht added: “Our aim is to have most of these decisions made by the end of the year so we can start 2023 feeling settled and prepared for the future.”