NBC prunes 'Dateline' jobs


NBC News began late last week to make the first cuts as part of its NBCU 2.0 overhaul, laying off about 15 "Dateline NBC" employees.

Sources said the cuts were made Thursday and Friday at the NBC News bureaus in New York, Chicago and Washington. It was unclear whether those included on-air personnel.

Late last month, NBC Universal announced that it would restructure its operations and cut 700 jobs in a bid to save at least $750 million annually. The plan includes moving costly sitcoms and dramas out of the 8 p.m. slot and relying more on its in-house production studio.

But the most sweeping changes will come at NBC News, where the most personnel cuts will be made. "Dateline" is only one of the units that will be pruned, though it apparently was the first, according to one source.

MSNBC will within the next year or so leave its Secaucus, N.J., headquarters and move across the Hudson River to NBC News' headquarters at 30 Rockefeller Center. Some technical operations will shift to Englewood Cliffs, N.J., where sister network CNBC is located. But no cuts have been made at MSNBC so far.

Sources said that more people took buyout packages than expected, which will probably reduce the number of layoffs that will be carried out.