Sound familiar? McClatchy cutting jobs
These have been a couple of ugly weeks for the newspaper industry. First, EW Scripps pulled the plug on the Rocky Mountain News, and then, today, McClatchy said it was cutting about 1,600 jobs, representing 15 percent of its workforce.
For those who like to look at the bright side of things, McClatchy isn’t shutting down The Miami Herald, Sacramento Bee or Anchorage Daily News. But the staff cuts are deep and undoubtedly will hurt the quality and depth of coverage at some of those newspapers. How couldn’t they? After all, they come on top of two other major rounds of layoffs at McClatchy.
The move isn’t really a surprise, given that McClatchy said back in early February that it had to come up with a plan to cuts more costs given the deterioration of the industry. Still, it seems job cuts at the company come as frequently as seasons change.
Here’s what CEO Gary Pruitt had to say in today’s statement: “We have been transitioning steadily from a traditional newspaper company to a hybrid print and online, news and advertising company for some time. The effects of the current national economic downturn make it essential that we move even faster to realign our workforce and make our operations more efficient. We previously discussed a plan to reach a targeted level of cost savings, but given the worsening economy, we must do more. I’m sorry we have to take these actions, but we believe they are necessary.”
If that sounds familiar, it should. On two previous occasions in recent months Pruitt has used similar language to announce job cuts. Here’s a refresher.
– September. McClatchy announces it is cutting 1,150 positions. Pruitt: “It is painful to announce these staff reductions, but the continued restructuring of our company is necessary given the relentless economic downturn and its impact on our business.”
– June. McClatchy announces it is cutting 1,400 positions. Pruitt: ”The effects of the current national economic downturn — particularly in real estate, auto and employment advertising — make it essential that we move faster now to realign our workforce and make our operations more efficient. I’m sorry this requires the painful announcement we are making today, but we’re taking this action to help ensure a healthy future for our company.”
Any McClatchy staffers out there please pass along any thoughts you may have. Is this the last round of cuts? Has coverage been impacted? What’s the mood out there? Is Pruitt leading in the right direction?