New York Times offers buyouts to 30 newsroom journalists
The New York Times said Monday it was offering buyouts to 30 newsroom managers and other journalists as part of an ongoing cost-cutting drive in a difficult environment for the newspaper industry.
“There is no getting around the hard news that the size of the newsroom staff must be reduced,” executive editor Jill Abramson said in a letter to staff, which was was cited in the newspaper.
The Times reported that the primary goal of the program is to trim managers and other non-union employees, but will also offer some reporters and editors in the newsroom a chance to volunteer for buyouts.
The prestigious US daily has been cutting jobs in recent years even as it expands its online operations, and now has a newsroom roughly the same size as in 2003, about 1,150 people.
Employees will be given until January 24 to decide on accepting a severance package, according to the memo, which also stated: “I hope the needed savings can be achieved through voluntary buyouts but if not, I will be forced to go to layoffs among the excluded staff.”
The cutbacks come less than a month after unionized newsroom employees ratified a new contract through 2016 which offers modest raises and a revamped pension, ending a deadlock of more than a year and a half.
The New York Times Company, seeking to manage a shift to a digital platform, recently reported net income for the third quarter of $2.28 million, a slump of 85 percent from a year ago.
Overall revenue fell 0.6 percent from a year ago to $449 million, hurt by weakness in advertising, but partially offset by gains in paid digital subscribers.