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The Incredible Shrinking Paper!

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Pete Incaviglia, Dec 8, 2007.

  1. Pete Incaviglia

    Pete Incaviglia Active Member

    So, in the spring we're shrinking the size of our broadsheet paper. I'm not sure what the new measurements are, but we're "traditional broadsheet now." We're going to be the same size slimmed down newspapers that have already made this change.

    However, we're NOT changing the size of our body copy, leading or kerning. Everything stays the same, but we lose about an inch in width and inch in length.

    My question is: With smaller news holes, less words to work with, ect. how in God's name does my paper keep its current staff?

    Me, well, I have a conspiracy theory answer about this: We're eventually going to lay someone off with management's excuse being something like: "Well, we no longer have the space and therefore no longer have the need for our current size of staff."

    Has anyone ever worked at a paper that shrunk and then, in turn, shrunk it's staff for the reason I stated above?

    I'm way up the seniority ladder, but I'm not close to a buyout. I figure there is an outside - very far outside chance - I could end up in news if they shrink our sports staff to one, which I don't think could happen. I'm just a worst-case scenario guy.
  2. BigSleeper

    BigSleeper Active Member

    We've gone down twice, so that's two inches off the web width since I started more than 10 years ago. And no, we haven't had to cut staff for this particular reason. With all the specialty publications and online work this place churns out, there is no shortage of opportunities and space for staff to write.
  3. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    Nowadays, who knows? They cut without much thought. But it used to be that good papers with tight newsholes had extra-large copy desks because it takes a lot of time and effort to scrunch everything and still have it read like a professional story. I worked on two such papers and learned more there than I did anywhere else. I forget if it was William Zinsser or Red Smith, but one of them said, "I wrote a long story because I didn't have time to write a short one."
  4. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Active Member

    Actually, I think it was Mark Twain, about the length of a letter he had written.
  5. pressmurphy

    pressmurphy Member

    Anyone else hearing talk of Gannett going to a 44-inch web at some of its shops?
  6. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Last week we had 96 pages (we're a tab) twice, though a lot of pages were full-page ads.

    Last Sunday they gave me 17 news pages and there wasn't a whole helluva lot of AP news worthy of going in the paper.
  7. crusoes

    crusoes Active Member

    I assume we are, since we're lopping off an inch in February. Re-sizing agate style sheets in Quark is going to be a joy. Again.
  8. Hopefully the fact that they're cutting the cost of paper (by going smaller) would mean slashing the staff isn't necessary in the short-term, but I could see the smaller newshole coming handy as an excuse down the road.
  9. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    All the news that fits the print.
  10. SockPuppet

    SockPuppet Active Member

    The Fort Worth Star-Telegram is cutting 1,000 pages of space from 2008's budget.
  11. Colton

    Colton Active Member

    Ummmmmm..... http://www.sportsjournalists.com/forum/threads/50186/
  12. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    Three pages a day on average. Not good news, but I don't know if it's drastic enough to make readers notice.
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