Eric Sherman, the GM at VH1 Classic, several of his staffers and staff employees at MTV2 were among the first cuts at the start of an overall reduction of 250 jobs at Viacom-owned MTV Networks.

Sherman, who also was GM of VH1 Soul and the high-definition channel MHD, lost his job, MTVN insiders said Tuesday (Feb. 13).

MTV2 GM David Cohn also was let go, one insider said, but another person familiar with the situation said Cohn instead might have had a job change.

MTV2 has about 65 million subscribers while VH1 Classic -- which aired a live press conference and concert by the rock group The Police from the Whiskey A Go Go in Los Angeles on Monday (Feb. 12) -- has about 45 million.

Sherman had been at MTVN since 1987, rising up the ladder from an affiliate-sales position in Atlanta, according to a VH1 bio.

In an internal e-mail message on Monday, MTVN CEO Judy McGrath said the Viacom-owned programming group "will be fine-tuning how we operate in ways that will allow us to better share resources across our brands, and to invest in our linear channels and other key growth areas. In the U.S., we will build resources against some new businesses -- our interactive properties and some of our new networks -- and we will make reductions in others."

"Unfortunately, this means that approximately 250 U.S.-based staff employees will be leaving the company," McGrath's e-mail added. "Over the next few days, department heads will be meeting with those employees whose positions have been affected. The majority of this process will be completed by the end of the week."