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Current TV lays off 80

The LA Times reported today that Current TV, the cable network Al Gore founded, is laying off 80 people, including head programmer David Neuman.

The company said in a statement:

“Current Media has made changes to its organization, most notably in the area of television programming.  Current will be shifting away from short-form programming and daily in-house production and towards proven 30-60 minute formats from a multitude of sources, including acquisitions, co-productions, outside studios, as well as Current developed and produced content.

With this change, Current made the difficult yet necessary decision to eliminate certain daily, weekly, and non-regularly scheduled programs, including Current Tonight, Current Takeover and Current Exposed.

As a result of these cancellations, and the shift away from a reliance on daily in-house production, Current Media eliminated 80 positions worldwide associated with the affected programs and related support personnel in the company.

This re-organization was not the result of a need to cut costs. Current Media will have its most profitable year. This financial stability will allow the company to re-allocate resources in order to put further emphasis on areas of the business believed to best position Current Media for continued long-term growth. Part of this investment will be the immediate creation of new executive positions and teams in program development, licensing and acquisitions, talent management, research, marketing, affiliate relations and advertising sales.

As part of the re-organization, Current Media will be consolidating television production and programming development activities together under one roof in Los Angeles with new facilities at LA Center Studios.”