There hasn’t been much movement when it comes to the latest round of buyouts and possible layoffs taking place at the Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News, and Philly.com.
The latest update was that Philly.com would be re-branding as Inquirer.com, a move that seems strange to me, since Philly.com is one of the most recognizable brands and URLs in this region. Could foreshadow some kind of Daily News split, but I don’t know. It was also revealed that the “Philadelphia Media Network,” which owns the Inky/Daily News/Philly.com, will now be known as “Philadelphia Inquirer, PBC,” which stands for “public benefit corporation.”
Call it whatever; ownership is looking to cut “30 union jobs in the newsroom and other departments, plus an unspecified number of nonunion jobs,” as cited on… Philly.com. Buyouts will be offered to 140 employees, which includes 117 NewsGuild of Greater Philadelphia members.
Apparently that’s no bueno with the guild, who posted this on their website as they circulate a petition, after the jump:
For too long, we’ve normalized the act of cutting rank and file staff in order to balance this company’s books. We reject the notion that we are disposable. If you agree, join your colleagues — more than 150 Guild members so far — who have already signed a petition that reads:
“We, the employees of The Inquirer who create the content, sell the ads, and help ensure that customers get our product and that the revenue generated is collected so the bills get paid, unite in terror and concern that the Company’s latest plan for buyouts and possible layoffs is a shortsighted maneuver torn from a failed playbook — a move that will further erode the bonds this media company is trying to build with community and diminish the quality of its journalism.
“Led by a designated ‘Publisher of the Year’ and in the national media spotlight for its unique ownership structure, The Inquirer needs to immediately abandon its layoff plan and focus on a business plan that provides the kind of public service journalism the nation’s fifth largest city deserves.”
We have petitions circulating at SPP, Cherry Hill, and 801 Market. Reach out to Diane or a member of the Guild executive board to get a hold of one. If it’s hard for you to get to those locations, you can text or email a photo of your printed name and signature to Diane.
This was an interesting and brief exchange between a Morning Call and Inquirer employee:
I’ve spoken to a couple of “sources” over there, and they all say the same thing: too much fat at the top, plus folks with outdated and limited skill sets jamming up everybody else and not doing their fair share of the workload.