Just how bad is the news business?  Well in Tucson it’s apparently bad enough that the local Fox affiliate decided to cancel it’s local news broadcasts and lay off the news team comprising of  some 40-50 people.

The station known as Fox 11 will contract with local CBS affiliate KOLD to produce  the local news broadcasts beginning Feb 1.

Underlying the basic economics of the move it also reflects on the state of the news business in Tucson with some of the soon to be laid off staffers having come from other media organizations like the Tucson Citizen and Journal Broadcast Group when they made cutbacks.

According to the Tucson Sentinel a source told them that the reason for the layoffs was due to a lack of advertising revenues.

That is probably true as even larger news organizations been suffering from a dearth of advertising as the economy continues to stumble along  but may also may be due to the rise of citizen journalism.

Last Friday CNN issued pink slips to 50 employees citing technological advances that allows just about anyone to report the news with a hand held camera negating the need for full-time photojournalists and editors.

 

 

 

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) has named Fox the most  LGBT -inclusive  broadcast network in its 16th annual “Where We Are on TV” report, which charts the number of LGBT characters in scripted, primetime programming across broadcast and cable networks.

Fox dethroned longtime leader ABC with 6.8% of it’s series regulars being  portrayed as lesbian, gay,bi-sexual or transgender.

  • Fox leads the other broadcast networks  with 8 LGBT characters out of 117 total series regular characters; the highest number of LGBT characters of any broadcast network for the 2010-2011 season.
  • ABC is not in the lead for the first time in six years, and has significantly dropped in its percentage of regular LGBT characters, from 7.2% in 2010 to 3.4% for the upcoming season.
  • NBC is in decline for the third year in a row, and will feature three (1.9%) regular LGBT characters out of 154
  • The CW has also taken a step back, and will feature only one LGBT series regular characters out of 67 (1.5%).
  • CBS remains in last place for the fourth year in a row. Out of 134 series regular characters, only one will be LGBT (0.7%), but the network will include several LGBT recurring characters.
Not surprisingly HBO led the cable networks in being LGBT  friendly.
  • For the second year in a row, HBO features the greatest number of LGBT characters on cable with 11; seven of which are series regulars.
  • Also making a significant contribution to the count are Showtime with ten characters, ABC Family, FX and TeenNick with four characters each, and TNT and BBC America with three.
  • For the second year in a row, HBO’s True Blood is one of the most LGBT inclusive programs on television with six characters and is tied this year with the Showtime series Shameless.
Fox’s rise might shock some who align the network with it’s conservative cable news sister Fox News, but for those that have been watching Fox’s primetime programming over the years have noticed the gradual creep of LGBT characters and references over the years in an effort to deflect criticism from the powerful gay lobby.
LGBT infused shows and characters are here to stay and if you are uncomfortable with this trend then turn off the television and read a book or spend some time with your family.  It’s better for you anyway.