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NBC shuts down another innovative news service

Tired of hearing about a particular topic in the news? Would you like to be able to filter out particular topics? The Breaking News app allows you to micro-tune the exact news you want to get.

Well, not any more. NBC/Comcast is shutting down the Breaking News app, laying off its entire 22-person staff.

Breaking News has shut down operations as of December 31, 2016.

The shutting down of Breaking News sounds a lot like what happened when NBC/Comcast shut down Everyblock, another innovative site in the news industry. I was really upset that NBC shut down the awesome Everyblock in 2013. With Everyblock you were able to get news down to the very block you live on, and nearby blocks. You could customized exactly what type of news you get. Crime reports, restaurant reviews, public health inspections, etc. You pick what you want.

Despite Everyblock being so unique, NBC shut down it down.

Now NBC is shutting down the innovative Breaking News app. Another news service that I loved. Breaking News gave you the ability to micro-tune the news you get. Pick the exact topics you want, and more importantly block the topics you don’t want. I blocked 36 topics, and was following 7 others.

Such awesome filtering ability with Breaking News — much like Everyblock. The parallels with Everyblock and Breaking News are quite interesting.

And now Breaking News is shutting down. Just like how NBC shut down Everyblock.

Six months after shutting down Everyblock, NBC rebooted it. Very odd, right? Why go to the trouble of killing a service and laying off people, only to bring it back six months later? Isn’t there some law where if you lay someone off, you have to wait six months to rehire for that same position? Was Everyblock NBC’s way of saving payroll money?

If we follow NBC’s pattern of shutting down awesome innovative websites, in six months they will reboot Breaking News again.

One can only assume why NBC is doing this, but my heart goes out the staff of Breaking News. May you land in a place where you can spread your innovative spirit.

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