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Bosses in DC Give Up On TBD: Layoffs For Staff, And Bold Local News Experiment To Become “Niche Site”

So much for thinking big. Albritton, the company that launched the bold and inventive new local news site TBD.com, has quietly decided to pull the plug. According to Washington City Paper, Albritton's execs announced layoffs and plans to morph TBD into "a niche site on arts and entertainment." Wow. So much for reinventing local news.

Launched with bold graphics--a design that emphasized hyperlocal reporting, social media and plenty of weather coverage--TBD got plenty of attention in "future of journalism" circles. As the site describes itself:

Our goal is to create a comprehensive guide to local news and entertainment, delivered on multiple platforms, for anyone interested in what's happening in the region.

Or, perhaps, not.

As City Paper's Michael Shaffer reports, sources inside the TBD newsroom report the layoffs involve, essentially, the entire news staff:

"They’re saying it’s financial. That, basically, they don’t see the lines crossing any time soon," says a staffer. The logic, though, baffles those who came in with the understanding that Allbritton would be patient with its novel new property. "We all came here under the expectation of that widely-quoted 'three-to-five year' ramp."

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