Postmedia to put off 11% of editorial employees, sources say

Postmedia to put off 11% of editorial employees, sources say

Sources say newspaper writer Postmedia Community Corp. is shedding 11 per cent of its editorial employees, lower than every week after staff have been advised the corporate was grappling with “financial contraction.”

Postmedia, which owns publications together with the Nationwide Publish, Vancouver Solar and Calgary Herald and employs about 650 journalists, introduced the layoffs at a city corridor Tuesday afternoon.

In an audio recording of the assembly obtained by The Canadian Press, Gerry Nott, appearing senior vice-president of editorial content material, mentioned the cuts would have an effect on the entire firm’s publications excluding Brunswick Information and Postmedia Editorial Companies, which have already been downsized.

“There is not a property in our community that will not be affected by a restructuring, reorganization or layoff,” he mentioned.

“And to be clear, that is about aligning our value construction with our income stream towards ongoing decline in our trade and powerful financial headwinds main as much as this tough resolution on employees discount.”

Postmedia didn’t reply to a request for touch upon the cuts.

The sources requested to not be recognized as they weren’t approved to publicly converse on the matter or share recordings of the assembly.

A dozen newspapers going digital-only

The job cuts come days after the corporate warned employees in a memo that an unspecified variety of roles could be eradicated throughout Postmedia over the approaching months by means of hiring restrictions and layoffs.

On the similar time, it introduced it was shifting a dozen of its Alberta neighborhood newspapers to digital-only codecs, eyeing extra outsourcing offers for printing, shedding staff and promoting the house of the Calgary Herald.

The corporate had additionally adjusted print deadlines in main markets, made modifications to its comics and puzzles and eradicated publishing papers on some days, Nott mentioned Tuesday.

“Had we not made these modifications, the variety of journalists affected by layoff could be significantly increased,” he mentioned.

A man walks past newspaper boxes containing the Vancouver Sun and the Province in downtown Vancouver.
A person walks previous newspaper containers containing the Vancouver Solar and the Province in downtown Vancouver in 2016. (Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press )

Nott added that the corporate had but to establish particular jobs that will probably be reduce and mentioned it’s potential that administration positions will probably be affected at the next or disproportionate charge than non-management roles.

He mentioned he anticipated to start having conversations with editors finishing up the reductions within the subsequent 24 hours and urged anybody who felt they could not be a part of the corporate’s future to speak to union, human assets or editorial representatives about voluntary layoff packages.

Nott additionally revealed the corporate was going to maneuver to distant work on a everlasting foundation, apart from markets like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal, which he mentioned would return to the workplace.

He acknowledged the strikes would create a “tough time,” however mentioned it was “very important” to discover a path by means of this “extraordinarily turbulent stretch.”

Journalists ‘demoralized … disillusioned’

Employees have been “completely demoralized and disillusioned” by Nott’s announcement, mentioned Martin O’Hanlon, president of CWA Canada, a union representing some Postmedia staff.

“I all the time suppose we have hit all-time low, after which they all the time discover a new backside,” he mentioned. “I simply do not know how one can run a profitable media firm with this degree of staffing.”

He added that the cuts solely make the battle towards disinformation and misinformation tougher, are dangerous for democracy and imply that “Postmedia is now treading water to outlive.”

Peg Fong, a journalism teacher at Langara School in Vancouver, mentioned the cuts have been “devastating.”

“It looks as if the cuts at Postmedia have been deeper than in different main media shops … It appears there’s all the time some cause that they are wanting to chop reporters, who’re the lifeblood of newspapers,” she mentioned.

Newspaper conglomerates together with Postmedia have lengthy been scuffling with dwindling print subscriber numbers, the rise of huge tech firms which have eaten into media income and extra promoting shifting on-line from print.

“The unassailable fact is that the print viewers goes away, it is a demographic that is not being changed by one other readership viewers who consumes information in the identical manner,” mentioned Nott on Tuesday.

“It is clear that our advertisers have moved from print to digital. It is clear that within the digital area we’re up towards some behemoth that make it very aggressive and really tough for us.”

Lately, Postmedia has coped by closing quite a lot of small-town newspapers, decreasing print manufacturing of a few of its titles and resorting to layoffs and voluntary buyouts to handle prices.

Requested whether or not Postmedia itself will exist within the coming years, Nott mentioned, “I believe there’s each cause for hope and that we’ll exist three to 5 years from now.”

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