Despite Oprah Winfrey pulling in pretty nice ratings during several of her night Oprah’s Next Chapter episodes, news coming from OWN headquarters gets grimmer every day. OWN is already suffering from a lack of original content, often spending multiple hours of the day playing repeat episodes of shows that originally aired on true crime network ID. Last week, the network announced that one of its few and certainly most crucial original programs, The Rosie Show will finish airing at the end of the month.

That is not the end to the trouble on the OWN forefront. Today, OWN let go 30 of the network’s employees, which Deadline is stating is 20% of the channel’s work force. With the network faltering and costs needing to be cut, the restructuring move was likely the logical one, but it also serves to prove what dire straits OWN is in.

Despite this, OWN President Erik Logan is sticking with the optimistic angle.
” “We have been on the air for 15 months, and since September we have gained momentum in ratings and viewership. Restructuring our business will allow us to build a solid foundation for long-term growth.”

Perhaps Logan is right and OWN is on its way to getting on its feet and pulling in some realistic ratings in order to make money. More likely it is just another piece of bad news in the middle of a string of bad news. OWN needs to get new programming on the air, and it needs to happen soon. Otherwise, those audiences who really miss the Discovery Health Network may be seeing what would have seemed improbable a little over a year ago: the triumph of science over Oprah.

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