Walt Disney Co. Will Shut Down Radio Disney—and Our Childhood is Officially Over

After nearly 25 years, Radio Disney will soon be defunct.

If Radio Disney never existed, we may have never fell in love with Selena Gomez, Aly and AJ, Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, and Demi Lovato. The broadcasting company was influential in many millennials’ childhoods, and sadly, future generations will no longer be able to bop to the latest Disney star hits. Walt Disney Co. is shuttering Radio Disney in 2021, and welp, that wraps up our childhood, we suppose.

According to a statement released by Walt Disney Co., per the LA Times, Radio Disney and Radio Disney Country will officially shut down in the first quarter of next year after first launching in the Los Angeles area in 1997.

The decision to close Radio Disney comes after the Disney Co. was forced to cut costs due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The company has reportedly lost nearly $3 billion in the 2020 fiscal year, and reduced staff worldwide by the tens of thousands.

“The difficult decision to close these two radio networks coincided with Disney’s recently announced structural changes that call for Disney Branded Television to sharpen its focus on increasing production of kids’ and family content for Disney+ and Disney Channels,” a statement from Walt Disney Co. reads, per the Times.

With Radio Disney and Radio Disney Country getting the boot, Disney Co. hopes to refocus their attention on streaming outlets and creating more content for Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+.

The statement continues, “Division leaders also took into account the fast evolving media environment that provides more personalized music choices than ever to a generation of young consumers, and the ongoing public health crisis that continues to affect in-person music events.”

This is truly the end of an era. Please take all the time you need to mourn over the death of our collective childhood. RIP, Radio Disney. You will be greatly missed.

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