Saturday, October 24, 2009

Looking for clues about the changes coming to McClatchy newspapers

The publishers at Tacoma and Modesto both told employees this week that big changes are in the works at their papers.

They spoke in general terms. David Zeeck mentioned rebuilding the paper from the ground up. In an email to employees yesterday, Eric Johnston spoke of an operational reorganization.

Johnston said he would give more details to employees this coming week.

What kind of changes are they going to make? I don't know. But a reader posted this provocative comment.

Same crap that's going on at other McClatchy papers. They're putting more emphasis on the online product, consolidating copy editor duties and staff, demanding reporters use modern news-gathering tools (video, Twitter, etc.) and shifting responsibilities and titles. In other words, more work and pressure for the peasants.

Update: another reader says the reorganization -- if we can call it that -- has to involve cutting costs because the company probably needs to cut expenses another 20% - 30%.

... At the end of the day, fewer people are doing more work. The company needs to cut costs another 20% to 30% in order to remain profitable while revenue declines another 20% to 30% over the next year.



Anonymous said...

That comment you posted says just about all of it. McCrappy now operates with a skeleton staff that is about to get more bony with more layoffs. They need all the troops to do more and in a different manner. They're cracking the bullwhip and demanding the slaves row the boat faster. If you can't keep up, you get dumped overboard.

Anonymous said...

Are you saying it's a Ship of Fools?

Anonymous said...

More like the "Poseiden Adventure."

Anonymous said...

Reorganization typically means layoffs.
They may shift titles around, pressure some people to quit, etc.

At the end of the day, fewer people are doing more work. The company needs to cut costs another 20% to 30% in order to remain profitable while revenue declines another 20% to 30% over the next year.

There is really no way to put lipstick on this pig. When you are in an industry where the revenue is tanking, they have to cut costs.

Anonymous said...

They could always, in desperation, try actually reporting the news in an unbiased and professional manner.

Naw.... they have already spent way too much on their carbon fiber Obama knee pads from REI.

Anonymous said...

Along with what others have said, I wouldn't be surprised if MNI follows New York's/Long Island's Newsday's lead in which this week they will go to a pay-to-read format for ... get this ... a whopping $250/annually.

Now who the hell in his/her right mind is going to pay $250 to read content they can get elsewhere -- from other newspapers, local television news and local television news web sites, radio news, local blogs, etc.

I guarantee that it will spell disaster for No question in my mind.

It wouldn't surprise me in the least to see the clueless fools running MNI follow Newsday's lead and demise with this brainless idea.

If you didn't think so before, let this be the proof that the newspaper industry is just completely out of touch, out of reality and is absolutely clueless. It's as simple as that.

They turned a blind eye to the internet for 15 years and are just now deciding to play "catch-up."

Too late folks!

Anonymous said...

Yes, management teams in denial did not prepare for the online revolution. Yet most of those same nincompoops are still managing newsrooms! No mystery why McClatchy and other chains are in deep, deep trouble. Point the finger right at Gary Pruitt for not bringing in innovative thinkers and daring managers.

Anonymous said...

Our paper has a forward thinking manager overseeing the online product, but the executive editor choses to ignore most of his good ideas and continues to swoon over the outdated BS of the tired, old managing editor of news. House cleaning at the top is sorely needed.

Anonymous said...

In this case, reorganization might mean four-day workweeks. Saves 20 percent right off the top.

Anonymous said...

A four-day workweek won't work with reporters covering beats. You can't work 32 hours a week and do a good job on your beats. But I guess they're not concerned about doing a good job anymore.

Anonymous said...

It seems that little news about McC IS the news. So broken that more layoffs and outsourcing are no longer news to report or even comment on.

McClatchy Watch said...

5:41 more McClatchy news to come Monday and beyond.

Anonymous said...

Monday they announce the paid circulation drops. That should be a dark day for McCrappy.