MTV News, once a top destination for interviews with celebrities like Madonna and Prince, is shutting down as part of a larger restructuring effort by Paramount Global, which owns networks such as CBS, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, and Showtime.
The company is laying off approximately 25% of its staff due to soft ad markets and economic headwinds. Showtime merged with MTV Entertainment Studios earlier this year, and the decision to cut MTV News was made after months of coordination between senior leaders and HR to optimize the organization for the company’s current and future needs.
Along with music, MTV would cover pop culture and even politics as the younger generation was suddenly getting their news from MTV News compared to your traditional evening news.
From breaking the news of the death of iconic Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain to hosting town halls with Barack Obama, Bill Gates, and a ‘whose who’ of politics and industry, MTV’s News division would thrive until the late 2010s as in 2017 the division would see a heavy reduction in its scope and size after it tried to compete with more modern outlets such as BuzzFeed.
However, MTV’s cultural presence still lives as just recently Kurt Loder would appear, as himself, in a fictional segment promoting the hit Showtime series ‘Yellowjackets’ where Loder would report on the missing soccer team the entire show is based around and their ‘unknown whereabouts.’
The news is sad for the entertainment industry, as many talented individuals have lost their jobs. MTV also recently announced scaling back its annual awards show due to an ongoing writer’s strike. Fans of MTV hold many memories dear to them as the musically gauged network was both a giant in the industry and pop culture alike. It’s incredibly heartbreaking to see the brand go.