The Baltimore Sun officially reported on its cutback of 61 staffers this week, including some 18 top and middle editors. In a story Thursday the paper described the move as “a reorganization the company said would help it not just survive but succeed in one of the worst economic downturns in decades.”
The story cited parent company Tribune filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December as among the signs of economic problems.
The report said the cutbacks hit “nearly every type of job in the 205-person newsroom, including top editors, news photographers, critics, columnists, sports reporters, copy editors, page designers and graphic artists, according to The Newspaper Guild, which was notified of the union-represented layoffs.”
Just one news reporter was laid off after leaving voluntarily, the story said. Most employees were notified Wednesday, with others laid off late Tuesday.
The moves were made as the company is restructuring The Baltimore Sun’s newsroom, said Renee Mutchnik, a spokeswoman for the Baltimore Sun Media Group, in the story.
“We’re going to become a 24-hour, local news-gathering media company so we can more effectively gather content and distribute it among our different platforms: print, online and mobile,” Mutchnik said. “As everyone knows, more and more readers are moving online, and advertisers are following them. This is our plan for success, not just survival.”
Mutchnik and editor Monty Cook have failed to respond to numerous E&P requests for information.
“It’s stunning, just the breadth of them across the board,” Angie Kuhl, The Baltimore Sun’s unit chairwoman for the Guild, told the paper. She said some 40 guild members were laid off Wednesday.