Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Update: Local Daily Lays Off 31 People; Editorial 'Gutted'

(Update: Word comes that the editorial department at the paper, the one conservatives love to hate, has been "gutted." Also understand photo department head Natalee Waters is looking for work and Managing Editor Michael Stowe will direct that department. Kathy Lu is leaving features for a job in Kansas City, but that was previously announced.)

After hearing most of the morning that Roanoke's local daily paper had laid off a bunch of people, the paper finally posted a story (when the rumor mill was running at full throttle). Here's the gist of what Publisher Terry Jamerson announced in print:

"As part of the restructuring announced today, The Roanoke Times will add news gathering resources, and our circulation department will reinstitute delivery of missed newspapers in the near future, within our primary market area. The eliminations came primarily in the digital, technology and production areas, where the enterprise will take advantage of corporate resources that are now available through BH Media.

"Although some jobs are being combined and restructured, the total number of jobs eliminated today was 31. Following today's announcement, the Roanoke Times and will have a total of 253 employees."

So, next, we need to know who in news was fired, what resources will be added and how this will all affect what the newspaper of record is publishing in this market. More questions than answers. That seems to be typical of the news media reporting on itself.

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