Job losses at news organizations rose 281 percent in 2018, according to a report in the New York Post. The Post cites the latest Job Cut Report from global outplacement and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, which says that media companies announced plans to chop 15,474 positions over the course of last year, with 11,878 of those cuts affecting news organizations. In 2017, there were 4,062 announced job cuts in the industry. That made 2018 the toughest year for journalists since 2009, when media companies shed 22,346 jobs. “Many jobs were already in jeopardy due to a business model that tried to meet consumer demand for free news with ad revenue,” said Challenger, Gray & Christmas vice president Andrew Challenger. “As media outlets attempted to put news behind pay walls, in many markets, consumers opted not to pay.” And things don’t seem to be looking up for 2019. The Job Cut Report notes that 1,279 media sector job cuts were announced in January, up 49.6 percent from the 855 announced in the same month last year.
Digital advertising revenues increased to $26.2 billion in Q3 2018, according to the Internet Advertising Bureau’s Internet Advertising Revenue Report, which was prepared by PricewaterhouseCoopers US. The report says that figure represents a 20.6 percent jump from the third quarter of 2017. Through the first three quarters of 2018, marketers spent $75.8 billion on digital ads, a 22 percent jump from 2017’s numbers. “Last year saw significant growth in the OTT marketplace and in the direct-to-consumer brand ecosystem—contributing factors in digital’s successful Q3,” said IAB senior vice president, research and measurement Sue Hogan. IAB’s survey includes data on online ad revenues from websites, commercial online services, free e-mail providers, and all other companies selling online advertising.
While CBS posted a three percent jump in year-over-year revenues for Q4 2018, the increase was not enough to meet Wall Street’s expectations. The $4 billion that the company brought in fell short of the $4.2 billion that had been projected, leading to a three percent drop in its share price following the close of the market on Feb. 14. On the positive side, ad revenue was up by seven percent, largely due to the $100 million in political advertising that CBS says it brought in during the quarter. Affiliate and subscription fee revenues were also up by 11 percent. However, content licensing and distribution revenues were down 14 percent.