Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Times expected to cut up to 50 jobs

Guardian reports that in preparation for its June paywall, the Times, will be reducing its editorial budget by 10% and implementing a number of voluntary redundancies that could leave up to 50 journalists out of work.
In a lunchtime meeting at the Times last week, editor James Harding revealed that sister publication, the Sunday Times, would also be cutting its editorial budget by 10%, which could lead to the elimination of 30 jobs. The grand total of redundancies could reach 80.
Staff at the Times have two weeks to apply for voluntary redundancies, this is the only News International publication to offer these, and those who decide to take the offer, would receive four weeks' salary for every year worked plus a four-month notice period.
The Sunday Times staff will also be hearing about the paper's cost saving plans soon, which could be cutting £4.5 million from the current editorial budget of £42.5 million a year, would go into effect on July 1st. It is estimated that The Times and the Sunday Times lose up to £240,000 per day. The company has blamed these losses on an advertising downturn.
After his lunchtime meeting announcement, James Harding emailed his staff and wrote that Times Newspapers (to include both Sunday Times and Times) are suffering "unsustainable" losses, according to Guardian.
"We cannot ensure the long-term future of this paper and our futures in journalism if we cannot make a viable business out of the Times."
"We are clearly in a period of galloping technological change and we need to ensure that we have the resources to invest so that we can lead the market in digital journalism," the editor of the Times said. "Today, we are starting a process to cut costs, reduce our losses and free up resources for the future of our journalism."
Interestingly enough, the newspaper's decision to cut back on staff and editorial budget comes just a few weeks before the newspaper erects a paywall around its website. The Times will start charging for access to its online content in June, before The Sun and News of the World, also owned by Rupert Murdoch's News International.

Sources: Guardian

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