Sinclair Broadcast Group announced Tuesday it is shutting down its general interest website Circa. “For three years, Circa.com has provided unique video storytelling that has yielded a committed audience, national awards and numerous innovations for Sinclair’s wider digital efforts. So, it is with great sadness that we announce today that, after deep consideration, we will be closing Circa.com,” Sinclair said.
The news release from Sinclair Broadcast Group’s Circa website speaks of “moving forward,” launching an app and securing news feeds from the company’s national news desk in D.C. What it doesn’t mention: Seven staffers at the company have lost their jobs, well-placed sources have told the Erik Wemple blog.
The national digital platform will roll out a video-driven, live news app next week in conjunction with its national news desk in Washington.
John Solomon, the one-time investigative reporter who headed Sinclair’s Circa millinnenial-focused news service Circa, has joined the Capitol Hill paper as VP of digital video. He starts his new job July 25. According to Politico Morning Media, Solomon may be working on an OTT streaming service covering the same political ground as the paper.
What was once an imaginative mobile news app has become a big part of Sinclair’s national strategy — one that critics say pushes its conservative views on audiences.
Millennials looking for a no-spin video news and entertainment space are flocking to Circa, a digital platform launched by Sinclair Broadcast Group last summer. Circa’s team of 60-plus journalists have apparently found a formula for creating original video-driven stories and reformatting compelling footage from SBG’s local newscasts into the kind of fast-paced videos that millennials prefer for mobile consumption and social sharing.
Circa News, a millennial-focused media outlet owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group that launched only eight months ago, has been embraced by Republicans for aggressive reporting on Russian meddling in the 2016 election that runs counter to reporting in more mainstream outlets.
The company’s chief creative officer is now chief operating officer of the videoÃ¢â‚¬Âdriven news and entertainment portal designed for millennials.
Now under the ownership of Sinclair Broadcast Group, Circa’s spring relaunch will put the broadcaster’s video assets at its core, Mathew Ingram reports. He talks to John Solomon, its new editor, about his plans to create a “mobile-centric, video-centric news service that doesn’t come with a point of view.”
The digital news site the broadcast group bought in August will re-launch in the spring, with John Solomon on board as chief creative officer. He most recently was VP for content and business development for The Washington Times.
What’s this: a second act for Circa? The (once) popular news app’s domain (circanews.com) is now registered to Sinclair Broadcast Group, and the site offers the cryptic message: “Circa will be back soon…” Media watchers are already head scratching as to what it might mean.