It's a sad day for Oprah Winfrey and her OWN television network. According to reports, as many as 30 people -- roughly one-fifth of her staff -- were laid off today.
In a statement, Oprah called the move regarding the network, which launched just over a year ago, "tough." She said it was necessary, however, for "long-term success for the network." Still, ouch, and while it sounds like she's not giving up yet, things aren't looking so good for the network. A source told TMZ, "It's like a ghost town over there."
I can't say it's surprising.
How many things have YOU watched on the network? I report regularly on entertainment, and besides Oprah's interview with Whitney Houston's daughter, Bobbi Kristina, I frankly almost forgot the network even existed.
I was, of course, reminded of it again last week when Rosie O'Donnell and her show also got the axe from the network. As The Daily Beast points out, O'Donnell was supposed to save the network, but instead, she may have helped sink it.
According to reports the show was a disaster with problems from start to finish, including dismal ratings. One episode pulled in only 60,000 viewers. If that's an example of the problems the network's shows face, today's news is even less surprising.
Commenters on the site, seem generally perturbed with the network as well. As one stated:
People, so many, want Oprah to succeed and really want OWN to succeed, but have been let down tremendously due to hours and hours of reruns, negative non-uplifting shows, cancelling Rosie, OVER AND OVER they have said they do not like certain shows and they do like certain shows, listen! It's been over a year now, how long does this take, I thought some planning went into it even before it premiered, and still hours and hours of reruns etc.
It's too bad too. Oprah is a beautiful person, who inspires so many. There's certainly plenty of trash out there on TV, and her programming could be a nice, bright spot amongst it, but it's just not shining brightly enough now. Will she be able to work it out? I have my doubts, but I also don't doubt Oprah's ability to make things happen. Anything is possible.
Do you watch anything on OWN? What do you think about its chances for survival?
Image via Oprah