U-T San Diego's TV station is going off cable tonight after two years, the company announced today. Some believe it had been losing $500,000 monthly, as the company has admitted in internal memos that it is having problems. The dropping of U-T TV from cable may explain why John Lynch recently lost his job as day-to-day manager of the U-T. Supposedly, Lynch, who still has the title chief executive, is working on acquisitions.
Mike Hodges, who replaced Lynch as day-to-day manager, said, "We are out of the over-the-air broadcasting business." However, the company expects to have a website TV operation that can be accessed by digital devices, including computers, tablets, and smartphones. There will be regular news updates, commentary by Roger Hedgecock, and interviews with reporters and critics from the newsroom.
Employees estimate that 20 to 25 people will be laid off. Hodges said "a few dozen" of the approximately 45 employees will remain on board, but employees think that is an optimistic way to put it.
U-T TV could not reach a deal with Time Warner Cable. It was carried by Cox, "but only as part of a digital cable package," says the U-T announcement. "Without the reach of other local news stations, U-T TV had trouble finding an audience" and advertisers, said the U-T.