Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Keller Says No Further Job Cuts at the Times (NYO)

I posted recently on the perils of cost cutting by a thousand cuts and how bad for staff morale it is. I also posted on Goldman Sach's analyst quite rightly connecting the dots between editorial cut backs and declining circulation.

So it's good to read the following about Mr. Keller on job cuts. However, I am perturbed by his use of the word 'horizon'.

Where exactly is the 'horizon' in the current newspaper industry/wider financial crisis?

Not very far away I would say and hearing about job cuts from him before Gawker is the same as saying you'll hear it from Mr. Keller 5 mins before Gawker or this blog.

None of which would make me put too much weight into his statement, honest and sincere as it no doubt it is, but things are moving fast.

P.S I don't know which is worse as a moniker: 'State of the Newsroom' (pompous) or 'Throw stuff at Bill' (dress down Friday corporate B.S for serious meetings)

Keller Says No Further Job Cuts at the Times (NYO)
by John Koblin October 27, 2008

"Throw Stuff at Bill" Keller
New York Times executive editor Bill Keller denied that there will be any further newsroom job cuts at the Times this morning at his State of the Newsroom meeting, "Throw Stuff at Bill." [Update, October 28th: The Times sessions are actually called "Throw Stuff at Bill."]
"The answer is no," said Mr. Keller, according to an attendee. "No, I do not see another round of newsroom staff reductions on the horizon."
He said that hiring will be "even more selective than before," but the goal is to avoid painful cuts that other newspapers have made.
Earlier this year, the Times cut 100 newsroom positions, leaving the total newsroom body count around 1200—bigger than any other single newspaper's newsroom in the country. At Mr. Keller's last newsroom address, back in February, he announced those job cuts, leaving many staffers wondering if more cuts would be announced again today.
Gawker had recently
reported a tip that the newsroom was planning on a 20 percent editorial staff reduction.
Mr. Keller dismissed that rumor by saying, "consider the source." He said that if cuts become necessary, "You will hear it from me before you hear it on Gawker."
According to our source, the sole question that Mr. Keller was asked today was about job cuts and "he answered it, several times."
UPDATE 12:28 pm: Our source clarified that Mr. Keller wasn't asked one question; he was asked several.


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