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Gannett Sending Out Buyout Notices Monday

Rick Edmunds at Poynter is reporting:

Gannett, the nation’s largest newspaper company with more than 250 daily titles, will begin offering another round of newsroom buyouts next week. It has not yet said how many….

The changes were announced by CEO Mike Reed during a companywide virtual town hall Wednesday, two Gannett journalists told me. Letters will begin going out Monday, and more detail is expected then.

In a brief email, Reed confirmed the action but minimized its potential impact. “Voluntary means it’s up to an individual employee to choose. Maybe zero newsroom employees choose it.”

However –

One editor said, “Letters will be going to people picked out for it, and apparently it will be similar to past GateHouse buyouts. And basically if you get the letter, you are toast.” He added that typically those affected will be offered one week of severance for each year of service, plus a small bonus.

Edmunds concludes:

In his town hall talk, Reed also said that the fourth quarter is off to a good start financially and that the company continues to make progress paying down the large debt it took on to merge the Gannett and GateHouse chains.

The company has said it employs roughly 5,000 journalists at USA Today, the regional papers and other vertical digital sites.


above © Jeff Koterba/Omaha World-Herald 2018

Then-Gatehouse laid off their three editorial cartoonists last year, when they bought Gannett this year they inherited three editorial cartoonists. The editorial cartoonists that may be (hopefully not) affected by this Gannett action are:
Mike Thompson, Detroit Free Press/USA Today
Andy Marlette, Pensacola News Journal
Nathan Archer, freelance Tallahassee Democrat

Community Comments

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#1 Mike Peterson
October/18/2020
@ 2:26 am

There are worse things than targeted buyouts. I worked for a paper that offered X-number of buyouts per department, but kept mum on who had gotten one.

If you asked for a buyout but there were none left in your department, it identified you as someone who could probably be bullied and harassed into quitting without all that compensation.

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