Head chopping continues: Newspaper Industry In Death Spiral?
The East Bay newspapers operated by MediaNews Group Inc. (the private company known for buying 'fire sale' papers) made a statement last week that it has eliminated jobs in several locations, with the cuts affecting every part of the publishing operation. This comes just two months after positive statments to the newly bought staff from the former Knight Ridder chain.
A "sudden and steep decline" that has jolted the housing market in the Bay Area, coupled with an ongoing migration of advertising money to the Internet, forced the papers to reduce staffing, said John Armstrong, an executive with the newspapers. Combined revenues for the East Bay papers in the quarter that ended in September were down more than 3 percent from a year ago.
The cuts affected the Contra Costa Times, this newspaper and other papers run by Denver-based MediaNews in the East Bay, according to Armstrong.
"The reductions were broad but not deep," Armstrong said.
News, advertising, circulation, production, finance and administration jobs were affected. "Walnut Creek, Pleasanton, Oakland and San Mateo" were the primary locations for the job cuts, Armstrong said.
story by Mick Gregory
Update: With the economy booming, the market at an all-time high, interest rates still at historic lows, for the newspaper industry to be hurting this badly in good economic times should be a concern to the industry as a whole. Here is an interesting graphic from Google Labs comparing Newspapers, Blogs, and Web 2.0 sites like Digg and NowPublic. I think the interesting part shows the death spiral of the newspaper industry coinciding with the rise of web 2.0.