Can ESPN Adapt to a Changing Sports Media Landscape?

The sports broadcaster has been facing layoffs, a declining revenue, and a stormy political climate.

ESPN to Air More Than 500 Live Original Shows on Digital Platforms in 2020
A view of the logo during ESPN The Party on February 5, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Robin Marchant/Getty Images for ESPN)

Last week, ESPN laid off about 150 people. This follows 100 people getting laid off in April and about 300 people in late 2015. The biggest and most influential brand in American sports media seems to be faltering as it faces a declining revenue and a stormy political climate. Right-leaning political commentators have started to attack the self-proclaimed “Worldwide Leader in Sports” for liberal bias. Younger fans have embraced digital-native competitors like Barstool sports. And ESPN also reportedly lost 13 million television subscribers worth $1 billion in revenue.

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