Massive Newsroom Cuts At The Times

0214keller.jpgAt a morning New York Times meeting, Bill Keller broke the news that approximately 100 employees would be let go from the newsroom — that’s nearly 7% of newsroom staff.

At the NYO, John Koblin was told by sources that there was a “real clear” possibility of layoffs. According to sources, “He made the point that we don’t want to bleed forever and we want to get this over with. The low-hanging fruit has been cut and there will be more painful; it’s definitely not like cutting the recording room.” Additionally, the good word from Koblin is that Richard Perez-Pena was the only reporter with the nerve to ask Keller a question about the cuts.

Meanwhile, Jeff Bercovici of Portfolio spoke to Times spokeswoman Catherine Mathis. According to Mathis:

“We did have a meeting today and Bill Keller announced that the newsroom size will be lower by approximately 100 jobs by the end of this year. He said it will be achieved primarily through attrition and buyouts but layoffs are possible.”

Perez-Pena, of course, wrote about it for the Times. Interesting sidebar: He attributes a “low-hanging fruit” metaphor to Keller as well.