Monday, 13 October 2008

In the current market can newsroom cuts ever be described as 'Incredible'?

I wrote at the time:

I forwarded my post to the journalist in L.A responsible, and this was his response (if he had taken two seconds to check out the blog he would have worked out that the person who had forwarded him this post was indeed the blogger himself - me; so I'll go ahead and post his reply by email verbatim).

Thanks for the forward. If the blogger had been following the LAT he'd know the context that makes the new round of cuts arguably incredible -- that the LAT already did several rounds of cuts this year -- more than any other big US paper -- and the last round had barely ended when the new cuts were announced. In good companies, things don't change enough in three weeks to force widespread new layoffs. The publisher had said no new cuts were in sight, so these are even more surprising and seem like panic, not smart strategy. The Times has been run in panic mode for years, thus has lost more readers than any US paper. It arguably needs to improve not worsen its quality to stem the outflow of readers. And the LAT still makes tons of money. The cuts that one could argue should be done to respond to a plunging economy had *already been made.* These are on top of those, and probably driven by the owner being over-leveraged, and may have nothing real to do with the economic crisis.
Other than that, he nailed it.

I'll leave you to judge the merits of his response.


International Herald Tribune
New York Times

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