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20 newsroom layoffs at USA Today; no voluntary buyouts

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by 2muchcoffeeman, Nov 25, 2008.

  1. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    No word on how many jobs lost outside the newsroom. Affected employees will receive one week's pay for every year of employment.

    USAT ditched 45 newsroom jobs via buyout last November.

  2. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    One whole week? Generous...
  3. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Gannett is cutting 3,000 jobs and only 20 are coming from The Mother Ship...

    That should come as a surprise to absolutely no one...
  4. Sam Mills 51

    Sam Mills 51 Active Member

    I'm amazed they actually went after 20 jobs at USAT. Given their love affair with the publication, I wouldn't have been the least bit surprised if Gannett had left it untouched. Those four-graf stories don't write themselves, y'know ...
  5. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    I have friends who work or have worked there and they said that place just throws money around like nothing.

    I know one who was sent to Brazil to write a 10-inch story that could have been written just as effectively off a press release.
  6. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    No voluntary buyouts ... but they are seeking volunteers.

    Here's the memo:

    To: The newsroom staff
    From: Ken Paulson and John Hillkirk

    The current economic crisis has taken its toll on businesses nationwide, including USA TODAY. This will mean a cut in our 2009 budget, including the elimination of about 20 positions in early December.

    We wish this wasn't necessary, but we're facing unprecedented economic challenges and we have to cut spending.

    We'll have our regular monthly staff meeting Monday at 5 p.m. EST and will discuss this development and answer any questions you may have, but here are the basics:

    Those whose jobs are eliminated will receive severance consisting of 1 week of pay for each completed year of service, with a minimum of 2 weeks and a maximum of 26 weeks of severance.

    If you'd like to volunteer for severance, please notify Lillian Perez in Human Resources by close of business on Dec. 1, using the attached form. Volunteers will receive the same compensation package. Any staff member may volunteer and will be considered for the severance, but there may be some limits based on overall newsroom needs.

    The job eliminations - including those of volunteers - are expected to take place in early December, although under some circumstances, staff members may stay a few more weeks.

    This is a difficult close to what has been an extraordinary year for this newsroom, including outstanding coverage of the presidential race, the Olympics and the stunning decline on Wall Street.

    We'll talk about all of this on Monday. In the meantime, please feel free to drop by or send an e-mail with any questions.
  7. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    Why throw that in the memo? We did a great job; here's your thanks.
  8. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    That just sucks. So is there a running Gannett layoff count?

    It would be extremely interesting to see where the all the cuts are coming from.

    This seems to be 20 of 3,000.

    2,980 to go. Shit.
  9. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    The sense I get is that the medium-sized papers are going to be the hardest hit, especially if there is another Gannett paper within 100 miles.
  10. Johnny Dangerously

    Johnny Dangerously Well-Known Member

    That would not bode well for Gannett Louisiana, which has five papers in a fairly tight geographic area. Opelousas and Lafayette are in each other's backyards, and both are close to Alexandria, which forms a small enough triangle with Monroe and Shreveport that folks there must be nervous too.

    And they've already slashed staffs to the point where they are being asked to work miracles every day. I'm hoping for the best for my friends who work at these and other Gannett shops, but I know they're all preparing for the worst.
  11. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    There are a few other states where Gannett has a bunch of papers in a small area.
  12. derwood

    derwood Active Member

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