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The company was purchased by Rupert Murdoch (or one of his subsidiaries) and the first layoffs were to the fact-checking department.

Of course they were. I think that kind of sets the tone for what NatGeo will become going forward. For an idea of what will happen just look at the History Channel.

>For an idea of what will happen just look at the History Channel.

The History Channel did what most media does and started to appeal to the masses to make money. They're literally producing what people want to watch.

It's like when people complain about shows like American idol, or Honey-Boo-Boo, all the while the shows are crushing the viewership ratings.

That's such a self-fulfilling prophecy and dangerously close to circular logic and victim blaming. The people want this crap, that's why we give them more crap! The people are getting stupider because of this crap, so that's why they want more, so lets give it to them! Before you know it if nothing stops the spiral it's going to be fucking idiocracy controlled by the oligarchy!

Is it just me or does this mentality totally forget that the airwaves were public and we gave the companies access to them in exchange for a public service (which started out as nightly prime-time news.)

The airwaves belong to us, and if the corporations are so enamoured by pure monetary/viewership gains, and have forgotten the original edict and goals, not to mention potential uses for good of such widespread communications, we need to remove their right to the airwaves and bring them back under the public sphere.

Our population is being dumbed down by the media, while it could be doing the opposite.

I'll say it again, the airwaves should belong to the public.

Reminds me of a favorite Steve Jobs quote:

“When you’re young, you look at television and think, There’s a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that’s not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want. That’s a far more depressing thought. Conspiracy is optimistic! You can shoot the bastards! We can have a revolution! But the networks are really in business to give people what they want. It’s the truth.”

I would say Operation Mockingbird never went away and the conspiratorial view is the correct one. Media was never just about giving the people what they wanted, it was about telling them what they wanted in the first place, with a side effect of mass control.

Yes they did, they were making money anyway in their own specific niche, they just wanted a piece of the larger pie and for that they thre out any ideals they had. I am suggesting that NatGeo will go the same way, instead of documentaries on Hyenas or the lifecycle of turtles we will get the history of dragons, the lifecycle of griffins or even the dietary habits of werewolves.

So what? Just because you have sentimental feelings towards NatGeo doesn't mean they have to adhere to what you seem suitable to be their business model. If they leave a void of unfulfilled demand, it will be filled and quickly, don't fret about it.

Not at all, but I can lament the potential loss of what has been a great resource to date.

Right, they chose profitable crap over quality.

Many more articles on what aliens were up to a long time ago?

He hasn't bought it yet.

That's not what the first line of the article says:

"The National Geographic Society of Washington will lay off about 180 of its 2,000 employees in a cost-cutting move that follows the sale of its famous magazine and other assets to a company controlled by Rupert Murdoch."

The deal has been announced but it hasn't actually been completed yet. Though obviously the layoffs are part of the process before the sale is final.

News reports very frequently treat deals that have been announced as complete long before they are finalized, even if government approval is not guaranteed (e.g., some of the early coverage of the proposed Comcast-TWC merger said "Comcast has bought...").

And yet later in that same article:

"The deal, which will close in mid-November, precipitated concerns about layoffs at the organization..."

I suppose it's just semantics at this point.

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