TV One, a cable network focused on African-American audiences, said it would suspend production of “NewsOne Now,” its daily morning news program anchored by host Roland S. Martin due to budget cuts, Page six has learned.“They called a meeting on Wednesday and told the staff they were canceling the show. They’re having significant financial problems and they have to scale back. There were lots of tears … The staff was completely caught off guard” a source told them.The final live show is slated for Thursday, December 21.
TV One tried to save the program by making adjustments to the format, but the network says NewsOne Now did not gain traction with advertisers or viewers.
The program “struggled to attract a wide audience,” said Michelle L. Rice, the interim general manager of TV One, in a statement.”Like any other network, we had to make a difficult choice.” TV One began making adjustments to the show in recent weeks, but the show “did not gain traction with advertisers and viewers,” the network said. TV One intends to “restructure ‘NewsOne Now’ in 2018 under a new format that will better serve its audience and advertisers.”
The show, first conceived by TV One CEO Alfred Liggins, debuted in 2013, with a mission of offering a daily voice to African-Americans interested in important political and social issues.“Providing a platform for Black voices is in the DNA of our entire company,” said Liggins, in a statement “We know there is a void in mainstream media and we plan to continue to be an outlet for Black news.
Although some staff cuts resulted from the show’s suspension, host and managing editor Martin will continue to be heard across all Urban One platforms. No other TV One staff will be impacted.“I am undoubtedly saddened by NewsOne Now ending daily production,” said Martin. “We set out to give America, specifically Black America, a show that spoke to our issues, concerns and unique perspective. And we did just that.”