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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Layoffs at the Seattle Times

Posted by on Thu, Dec 8, 2011 at 10:42 AM

Jill Mackie, spokesperson for the Seattle Times, confirms something I've been hearing this morning:

“We announced layoffs yesterday of 20 people across the entire company," Mackie said. “While any layoffs are not desirable at any time, it’s 20 layoffs across the board out of a total full-time workforce of over 1,000.”

Five of those 20 layoffs are from the Times newsroom. But, Mackie added, “None of the layoffs in the newsroom involve on-the-street reporters or photographers.”

What does "on-the-street reporters or photographers" mean, exactly?

“It means exactly what I said," Mackie said. “I’m not going to go into great specifics. It involves other newsroom employees, including managers.”

The layoffs across the rest of the Seattle Times Company involved seven people in "operations," two in finance, and six in sales and marketing.

“It’s really driven by the ongoing economic downturn as well as our desire to position the Times to compete in tomorrow’s information marketplace," Mackie said. "So, as a part of that we’re reducing costs, and part of that is a limited number of targeted layoffs. These layoffs are designed to minimize the impact on our ability to provide outstanding journalism to the community.”

Mackie said the layoffs involve both union and non-union employees, and that the Times will now be bargaining, as required by contract, over the effects of the union layoffs.


Comments (17) RSS

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stinkbug 1
Too bad The Stranger's slog copy editor was laid off.
Posted by stinkbug on December 8, 2011 at 10:45 AM · Report this
"These layoffs are designed to minimize the impact on our ability to provide outstanding journalism to the community.”

Good thing they're so worried about costs that they just sent a reporter and photographer to New Mexico for two days for a human feature story. Give me a break.
Posted by TheAbsoluteShall on December 8, 2011 at 10:46 AM · Report this
TVDinner 3
I wonder if this week's I Anon and his boss are on the chopping block.
Posted by TVDinner http:// on December 8, 2011 at 10:48 AM · Report this
"I’m going to go into great specifics."

I think you accidentally a word.
Posted by Thunderbird on December 8, 2011 at 10:49 AM · Report this
Vince 5
So sad. Were any of these people cheering when The P.I. was a sinking ship?
Posted by Vince on December 8, 2011 at 10:51 AM · Report this
SchmuckyTheCat 6
With a staff of over 1000, why don't they just reposition people with attrition and not announce?
Posted by SchmuckyTheCat on December 8, 2011 at 10:52 AM · Report this
They actually employ people there??????…
Posted by sgt_doom on December 8, 2011 at 10:54 AM · Report this
Eli Sanders 8
@1 and 4: Thanks, fixed.
Posted by Eli Sanders on December 8, 2011 at 11:05 AM · Report this
seatackled 9
This clearly calls for a tax break.
Posted by seatackled on December 8, 2011 at 11:06 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 10
@9 but they already have an ever growing one from our state.

Couldn't we just retrain them as Iranian CIA drone pilots?
Posted by Will in Seattle on December 8, 2011 at 11:27 AM · Report this
You mean people around Puget Sound get tired of being lectured to about why they should pressure the state to cut the Blethen Family's taxes? Damn.
Posted by maddogm13 on December 8, 2011 at 11:34 AM · Report this
good riddance. the sooner the seattle times collapses, the sooner we can stop pretending that the that pos adds value to our community. and also, the sooner we can start dealing w/ the fact that the news industry effectively no longer exists.
Posted by philosophy school dropout on December 8, 2011 at 12:33 PM · Report this
Looks like "The Will of the People" -- as Joni gobbles about the income tax -- is making itself felt in a more direct way in declining citizen interest in purchasing her newspaper.

Is this what 'reform' looks like in the private sector, Joni?

Condolences to those who lost their jobs.
Posted by moretent on December 8, 2011 at 12:54 PM · Report this
@12: You are a fool. Investigative stories in the Times have saved lives and changed laws for years around here. Don't mistake the editorial page for the efforts of the many talented reporters they have.
Posted by Tony the Tiger on December 8, 2011 at 1:17 PM · Report this
@14 hey asshole, fuck you too! and fuck the times. and fuck the entire newspaper industry. they have failed us utterly as have all of the institutions in our society. let them die so that something else can be reborn.
Posted by philosophy school dropout on December 8, 2011 at 1:21 PM · Report this
Keister Button 16
Surely we can find some middle ground, @14 and @15, and hope out-of-touch and defensive opinion/editorialists at the Seattle Times are among the "walking people."
Posted by Keister Button on December 8, 2011 at 3:08 PM · Report this
@5 From what I recall, most of the folks at the Times were very upset about the demise of the PI. They also knew it could just as easily have happened to them.
Posted by magdaddy on December 8, 2011 at 10:33 PM · Report this

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