At the Washington bureau of the Belo newspaper chain, two veteran television reporters whose stories appeared on Belo’s 19 broadcast stations were laid off and are to be replaced by videographers who will shoot digital video for the Web sites of Belo’s 11 newspapers, including the Dallas Morning News.
Last week, the New York Times Co. sold its nine TV stations for nearly $600 million, months after it left its partnership with Discovery Communications on a joint TV channel.
Tribune Co. which has 11 newspapers and 24 broadcast stations and has put itself up for sale, has found tepid interest from bidders to buy the company and is considering spinning off the TV stations.
And Tuesday, executives at E.W. Scripps, which owns 19 newspapers and 10 TV stations, said it might consider splitting off its newspaper division as a separate company.
Television once was a coveted partner of newspapers. Executives talked of synergy between the two media, with newspaper reporters broadcasting their expertise on television, and TV stations providing a wider reach for the print brand. The high profit earned by TV stations, as much as 40 percent during years when the stations are fattened by political advertising, was seen as crucial to the bottom lines of newspaper companies.