David McWilliams tells RTÉ's executives to "grow up and face the real world" 4 weeks ago

David McWilliams tells RTÉ's executives to "grow up and face the real world"

"Face into the reality and do something about it. This whinging in the radio airwaves this morning is going to do no one favours."

Economist and broadcaster David McWilliams has said that RTÉ executives need to "get over it" and "grow up and face the real world" after the station announced dramatic measures to "address key issues, fight for its future and for public service media in Ireland."

On Wednesday, the station announced plans to make a large number of staff cuts in 2020 as well as introducing a 15% pay cut for their highest-earning presenters.

The broadcaster is attempting to reduce projected costs by €60 million over three years (2020-2023) and said that 200 job cuts are expected next year.

They will work with staff and unions on a number of initiatives to reduce costs.

Aside from this, RTÉ will be moving Lyric FM out of their Limerick production centre and into their studios in Cork and Dublin. Aertel and various digital radio stations have been closed down. The RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra will also move to the National Concert Hall.

The full breakdown of RTÉ's plans can be found here.

Earlier this morning, RTÉ's Director General, Dee Forbes, was interviewed by Bryan Dobson on Morning Ireland and said the broadcaster wanted to hold off publishing this report, due to its proximity with the sad news of Gay Byrne's death.

However, the financial report leaked on Wednesday and accelerated RTÉ's decision to go public with the announcement.

"We had been working with a very, very tight parametre, of course, the executive and the RTÉ board were fully across this. As I said, it’s regrettable. We need to know move on, we need to talk to staff,” Forbes said.

She also confirmed that there will be a full staff briefing this morning.

After the interview aired, McWilliams offered a blunt assessment of how he perceives RTÉ's current financial predicament and their decision to talk about it on Morning Ireland.

"I’ve been fired behind closed doors by RTE’s so called executives and none had the balls to tell me themselves or explain why. Get over it. Grow up and face the real world!," he said.

In another tweet, the economist said that their executives need to "face into the reality and do something about it. This whinging in the radio airwaves this morning is going to do no one favours."

McWilliams then offered a clarification of his earlier message by saying "just to clarify this tweet- I’m talking about years ago not recently [that he was fired]. The issue is the media game is changing extraordinarily quickly and RTE needs to figure out its place. There is a place but it ain’t going to happen by attacking the reality and pretending there’s an easy way out."

McWilliams previously presented The Big Bite, a topical afternoon discussion programme on RTÉ One, and he has also been a frequent guest on a variety of RTÉ shows.