NBCUniversal closes Daily Candy and Television Without Pity

NBCUniversal closes Daily Candy and Television Without Pity
Daily Candy announced Friday that it would close April 4. (Daily Candy / NBCUniversal)

NBCUniversal is closing two pioneering Internet businesses: Daily Candy, a sugary digest consumed by legions of trend-conscious women, and Television Without Pity, a website created to critique TV shows.

Daily Candy announced Friday in an email to subscribers the end of its run: "It is with the heaviest of hearts that we write today to say goodbye. After 14 years delivering you the best in food, fashion, and fun, this train, as they say, is pulling into the station."

The pink-hued website, and its daily email blasts, are scheduled to end April 4.

Daily Candy was an early adopter of Internet distribution, sending email newsletters to people who wanted to stay current on fashion trends and up-and-coming eateries and retail shops.

The company employed editors who tailored their offerings to residents of several metropolitan markets, including Los Angeles.

The snacky site served as precursor to Pinterest and other social media. It featured brash and cleverly written features, such as "LA's quirkiest Vending Machines...Undies, Cavier, Swimwear, and more."

Comcast Corp., parent of NBCUniversal, acquired Daily Candy for $125 million in 2008. The company attempted to resuscitate it in 2012 by hiring Alison Moore, a respected former HBO digital executive, to run the operation.

Daily Candy employed about 65 people.

NBCUniversal couldn't find a business model that would support the continued creation of original content for Daily Candy and Television Without Pity, despite faithful fans, a company executive said.

Attempts to find buyers also fell short.

The snarky Television Without Pity, known in TV circles as "TWoP," had three staff members. It launched in the late 1990s to mock the WB network teen soap "Dawson's Creek."

The site provided a groundbreaking format by offering fan forums and recaps of episodes of popular TV shows. It helped spark an explosion of Internet blogs dedicated to analyzing and, in some cases, obsessing over characters and plot twists of such shows as "Lost" and "Breaking Bad."

NBCUniversal's Bravo network bought TWoP in 2007.

The planned closures were first reported by Re/code.


Twitter: @MegJamesLAT