You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

TV news biz employment up 4.3%

Rise due in part to increase in local TV news profitability

Despite a weak job market, local TV news operations added 1,131 workers last year, according to an annual survey conducted by the Radio Television Digital News Assn. and Hofstra U. The survey showed a 4.3% gain in TV news biz employment in 2011.

In the U.S., 725 local TV stations produced news programming, employing 27,653 full-timers to do so. Another 242 stations air local news produced elsewhere. The average station added 1.5 new positions in news last year.

Profitability has been improving at local TV news operations, likely contributing to the staffing increase. The RTDNA survey shows 59.3% of station news efforts are in the black in 2012. That’s up slightly from last year and significantly from the 47.8% that were profitable in 2010. RTDNA says the profitability of local TV news is at the highest level since 1998.

The survey was conducted in the fourth quarter of 2011. At that time, more than half of the local news directors planned no staffing level changes in 2012, and 36.7% said they would hire this year. Another 2.4% said they’d cut positions and 6.3% remained unsure. In 2011, 46.2% of local TV news operations maintained the same staff size, 42.9% increased staff and 10.1% decreased.

Almost 1% of stations “don’t know” if they changed the size of their news units in 2011. That statistic has to make you wonder how well they report information not directly under their noses.

More TV

  • RENT: Top L-R to Bottom L-R:

    TV Shows to Watch the Week of Jan. 21, 2019: 'Rent: Live,' 'Celebrity Big Brother'

    Welcome back to Tune In: our weekly newsletter offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV. Each week, Variety’s TV team combs through the week’s schedule, selecting our picks of what to watch and when/how to watch them. This week, “Rent: Live” airs on Fox and “Celebrity Big Brother” returns for a second [...]

  • Black Monday: How Showtime Dusted Off

    'Black Monday': How Showtime Dusted Off An Old '80s Logo For Its New Comedy

    Cocaine’s a hell of a drug, but you’re not seeing things: That, indeed is Showtime’s old 1980s-era logo pasted all over marketing materials and promos for “Black Monday,” a tongue-in-cheek tale of the excesses exhibited by Wall Street traders in the lead-up to the stock market crash of 1987. The logo, which hasn’t been in [...]

  • 'Russian Doll' Review

    TV Review: 'Russian Doll'

    This is a particularly tricky review to write, but not because the merits of “Russian Doll” are at all ambiguous. On the contrary, the show is so striking and smart that I made a note to include it on my favorite TV shows of 2019 immediately after blowing through the season — which is saying [...]

  • Black Earth Rising Review

    TV Review: 'Black Earth Rising'

    Bringing to bear a talented cast on a story of real geopolitical significance, “Black Earth Rising,” Netflix’s drama about the long-tail aftermath of the Rwandan genocide, would seem to have had the potential to be one of 2019’s early television successes. Which makes its falling short all the more painful and pronounced. The show, previously [...]

  • DIRTY JOHN -- "This Young Woman

    'Dirty John' Finale Hits New Ratings Highs in Live+3

    The Season 1 finale of “Dirty John” on Bravo continued the scripted show’s ratings hot streak in Live+3. The finale, which aired on Jan. 13, grew to 3.3 million viewers in delayed viewing with 1.3 million of those falling in the key adults 18-49 demographic. That is up 10% in total viewers and 15% in [...]

  • Sky and Warner Bros. Alums Join

    Sky and Warner Bros. Alums Join ITV-Backed Production Company Possessed

    Former Sky One and Sky Living programming chief Adam MacDonald has joined Possessed, and will be the ITV-owned production banner’s first chair. The U.K.-based unscripted producer has also hired Lesley Davies, former head of international production at Warner Bros. She will head up production. The double hires follow a recommission  of gameshow “5 Gold Rings,” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content