Skip to comments.Cuts needed, Tribune's Zell says, 'so we can survive' (Dinosaur Media DeathWatch™)
Posted on 07/23/2008 5:54:49 AM PDT by abb
Real estate mogul Sam Zell, who took control of media giant Tribune Co. about six months ago, defended yesterday the staffing and page cuts under way at The Sun and its other newspapers as necessary in the worst advertising climate in decades.
In a conference call with Tribune Co. reporters, Zell said reducing staff by as much as 25 percent in some newsrooms and shrinking and redesigning the company's newspapers were the only options to ensure short-term survival and to allow a longer-term reinvention of the American newspaper.
"We're looking at some of the worst advertising numbers in the history of the world," Zell said.
"I have a responsibility ... to keep this business alive when cash flow has eroded at a prodigious level," Zell said.
"We went through every one of our organizations with a goal of getting efficient numbers up and head counts down so we can survive to live another day," he said.
"It is very clear ... the role of the newspaper is changing and we need to size our organization and our newspaper to reflect the realities of the marketplace," Zell said.
The Baltimore Sun Media Group, which publishes The Sun and community newspapers, is eliminating about 100 jobs through voluntary buyouts, layoffs and attrition. The Sun's newsroom will lose 55 people, or about 20 percent of its work force.
Other Tribune newspapers, including the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Hartford Courant and the Orlando Sentinel, are also making reductions.
Zell stopped short of saying that no additional reductions would be needed.
(Excerpt) Read more at baltimoresun.com ...
Tribune CEO Defends Cuts
Zell: Newsday sale to Cablevision may close soon
Tribune defends Call cuts
It’s time for journalism to face the music
To this very day, it seems to me journalism and mainstream media is still hell bent for leather to be “analysts” and filters for news than news reporters.
Are they surprised by this?
From the time the telegraph was invented and the consequent creation of the Associated Press cartel, 'news reporting' got its value only from the fact they controlled when and how the 'news' got distributed. With that monopoly came immense power to rival government itself. It all flowed from their control of the distribution system.
The internet has destroyed all that.
the los angeles times is a hate bush newspaper.
they don’t seem to get it—that their content offends some readers.
You think it might be because the Blight for All is propaganda and polemics dressed up as a “newspaper?”
i’m wondering if things get bad enough,
if zell spins off the los angeles times to those billionaires
who wanted home ownership.
these billionaires see eye-to-eye with the leftist journalists.
they’re baby boomer, anti-vietnam, california patio lizards, all.
It doesn’t matter. The LA Times is a black hole which is sucking down money so fast, even these billionaires can’t float it. Revenues are declining at a double-digit clip. The end is almost at hand for Tribune Co.
in 1989 i noticed that when i went to the university library, and stopped by the outdoor cafes for lunch,
i’d leave my l.a. times.
on the way back from the library it’d still be on the table where i dropped it.
it was about then i heard from my doctors and lawyers that the los angeles times was factually unreliable.
and this from one of my doctors who was a leftist!
The Internet is having a large impact on newspapers, but make no mistake: The masses still get their news from ABCNBCCBSCNN’s liberal mouthpieces. It’s changing, but slowly.
How can a guy that made so much money be such an idiot as to buy a chain of newspapers in todays market, I'll never know..... .He should have stuck with real estate.
Or worse yet, advocates.
Maryland “Freak State” PING!
He’s no dummy. I’m sure that he knew that the numbers were bad and getting worse when he bought the company, with employees’ money. He is going to sell off pieces one by one, in my opinion, and get much more for himself than he would have gotten if he had pulled the company into the black. Let’s revisit this in two years and see what’s left in the company and how he has made out personally.
Sam Zell is not a trophy-hunter and he is not looking for a monument to himself.
What, exactly, is he going to sell off? This isnt the NYT with real estate holdings and other media outlets and so on. We're talking about 20th century newspaper equity, and I dont think what he paid for it reflects what its worth today, much less what itrs worth tomorrow. Sometimes a dog is just a dog.
BTW I dont know exactly what his motive for buying was, but somehwere I read about his fond "nostalgic" memories of the newspapers of his youth. Or some such nonsense.
“Nonsense” is right.
Among other properties, the Tribune company owns Tribune Tower, a premier skyscraper near the Chicago River on Michigan Avenue across the street from the Wrigley Building, and it can be converted into residential units. The Tribune also owns the landmark LA Times building. This, of course, is in addition to the Chicago Cubs and Wrigley Field and a myriad of other, smaller, properties.
If he can convert the Tribune and other papers into strong local vehicles for obtaining local news on a timely basis, he can make them attractive to other buyers as well.
Don’t forget the employee pension fund....
“It appears thet the low ad sales is a vote of no confidence in Zell and for the paper to survive, he must sell to a real newspaper man, one with printers ink in his veins” a soon to be laid off newsroom staffer was heard to say.