One expert says BCE Inc.'s widespread layoffs, including at Bell Media, will lead to further deterioration of local newsrooms and journalism that is less contextual.
Magda Konieczna, an associate journalism professor at Concordia University, says journalists are increasingly being tasked with doing more despite fewer resources.
Konieczna, who researches local news, says this can lead to stories that aren't as deep as viewers expect, due to reporters having to divide their attention between filing content that feeds multiple platforms.
Bell Media said Thursday it is ending multiple television newscasts and making other programming cuts after its parent company announced job reductions and the sale of 45 of its 103 regional radio stations.
The company says under 10 per cent of its 4,800 eliminated positions would come from Bell Media, which includes both news and entertainment teams. As part of the shakeup, it says "multi-skilled journalists" would replace news correspondent and technician teams in some provinces.
Chief executive Mirko Bibic says Bell Media's advertising revenues declined by $140 million in 2023 compared with the year before, and the company's news division is seeing more than $40 million in annual operating losses.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 9, 2024.
Companies in this story: (TSX:BCE)
The Canadian Press