Morning Media Newsfeed: Hundreds Gone at Gannett | Free Press Editor Fired | Peyser Leaving NY Post

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Report: More Than 200 Layoffs at Gannett’s Community Papers (Gannett Blog)
Gannett’s U.S. Community Publishing newspaper division has now cut an estimated 218 jobs across at least 37 worksites, according to Gannett Blog readers. These figures are very preliminary and are almost certain to rise in the days ahead as more employees are notified. Most of the job losses were through layoffs over the past 24 hours, with a much smaller number comprising open positions that have been permanently eliminated, according to these readers. Other cost-cutting measures across the 81-title division include eliminating travel spending — all, in response to weaker-than-expected advertising revenue in the second quarter that may be spilling over into the current one. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Nine positions are being eliminated at The Post-Crescent in Appleton and seven at the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Among those cut was longtime Press-Gazette editorial cartoonist Joe Heller, sources said. The layoffs include both journalists and non-newsroom employees. Cincinnati City Beat Because of Gannett’s secrecy with staffing issues, it’s difficult to confirm any specific report. No names have been provided yet. JimRomenesko.com Here are the layoff reports I’m getting from Gannett papers.

Chattanooga Times Free Press Fires Editor Drew Johnson (Chattanoogan.com)
Chattanooga Times Free Press officials said Thursday that editor Drew Johnson had been fired “after placing a headline on an editorial outside of normal editing procedures.” The newspaper said, “Johnson’s headline, ‘Take your jobs plan and shove it, Mr. President: Your policies have harmed Chattanooga enough,’ appeared on the Free Press page Tuesday, the day President Barack Obama visited the city.” Chattanooga Times Free Press The headline was inappropriate for this newspaper. It was not the original headline approved for publication, and Johnson violated the normal editing process when he changed the headline. The newspaper’s decision to terminate Johnson had nothing to do with the content of the editorial, which criticized the president’s job creation ideas and Chattanooga’s Smart Grid. Nooga.com In an interview with NewsChannel 9 Thursday afternoon, Johnson said he was fired for violating a policy that didn’t exist at the time he wrote the editorial. “The next day I came in I was told there would be a policy put in place because people had complained about the title, and I said that’s fine. And [Thursday] I was brought in and [they] said ‘you’re fired’ for violating that policy that wasn’t created until after I wrote the piece.”

Andrea Peyser Is Leaving The New York Post for A While (NY Mag / Daily Intelligencer)
At the end of a typical dispatch from the New York City of Andrea Peyser’s glorious imagination — which veers from Sept. 11 to Anthony Weiner — the endearingly batty New York Post columnist announced her exit, at least temporarily. NY Post / Andrea Peyser To my friends, colleagues and frenemies. You, too, Alec Baldwin: You won’t be hearing from me for a while. I am taking a leave of absence from this newspaper. I dread missing the daily lunacies of Weiner/Spitzer, a pair of pervs who made coming to work each day feel like a vacation. I’ll miss giving hell to Gwyneth Paltrow and Lindsay Lohan. Most of all, I’ll miss the give-and-take with you, my loyal readers.

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Brian Williams Taking Leave of Absence for Knee Replacement Surgery (TVNewser)
NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams will undergo replacement surgery on his right knee next week and will be off the program for at least a few weeks. His knee problems date back to a high school football injury. Lester Holt will fill in for Williams while he is out.

The NYT’s $150 Million-A-Year Paywall (CJR / The Audit)
The New York Times’s once-torrid paywall growth continued to slow in the second quarter, adding 23,000 digital-only subscribers. That’s the second quarter in a row that the NYT has set new lows for digital-subs growth (it added 36,000 in the first quarter), signaling that the slowdown is real and circulation revenue growth is no longer quite enough to offset advertising declines. Revenue was down 1 percent from a year ago. Let’s keep this in perspective, though. Forbes / Mixed Media In need of some good news to share with investors, The New York Times Co. decided to be a little more forthcoming this quarter about the success of its two-year-old digital subscriptions program. And good news it is — just not good enough to offset the ever more dire tidings from the advertising side of the business.

National Journal Rolls Out New Team of Reporters (FishbowlDC)
NationalJournal.com editor Tim Grieve is out with a memo Thursday morning announcing brand new hires. Looks like they swiped two reporters from his former Politico stomping grounds. They include Patrick Reis, who he worked with at Politico Pro, and Vivyan Tran, who will be their new digital editor.

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Guardian Strikes Dailymotion Video Deal (The Guardian)
The Guardian has struck a deal with Dailymotion, the world’s second largest video-sharing website, to increase the reach of the publisher’s growing portfolio of video news and features. Guardian News & Media, the parent company of the Guardian and Observer newspapers, is to launch a dedicated online video channel that will be available to Dailymotion’s 112 million regular users.

HuffPost Pushes Further Into Sponsored Content (Digiday)
Publishers are crazy for native advertising, but they’re stuck with a problem: Who is going to create it? That’s why publishers like Vice and Gawker have begun partnered content-creation arms. Add The Huffington Post to the mix. It is officially taking the wraps off its new in-house branded content agency, HuffPost Partner Studio. Its charter is to make advertising that looks like regular Huffington Post content.

Is Tumblr Shrinking? (BuzzFeed)
Last November, David Karp posted on Tumblr’s staff blog. “I have an exciting and slightly overwhelming milestone to share with you,” the site’s founder and CEO said. “Tumblr has broken into the Top 10 sites in the U.S., and now has a worldwide audience of 170 million people.” The post contained a chart, from Quantcast, the analytics company he cited for his “Top 10” claim, which Tumblr allows to “directly” measure its traffic. But other data, and Quantcast’s, suggests that Tumblr’s presence on the Internet, or at least a major part of it, isn’t growing, but shrinking.

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Philadelphia Weekly Senior Writer Tara Murtha Sues Philadelphia Weekly, Alleges Gender-Based Discrimination (Philadelphia Magazine / The Philly Post)
Philadelphia Weekly senior writer Tara Murtha filed suit in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against her employer Wednesday. She’s alleging gender-based discrimination in pay in a “male-dominated, sexist and chauvinistic atmosphere.” The complaint, referring to Murtha as “one of the most important and respected investigative journalists in the United States,” claims that a $2,000 cut in pay was not eventually reinstated based on her gender.

Jennifer Aniston Mocks Katie Couric: ‘Is She A Legitimate Journalist?’ (Variety)
Jennifer Aniston apparently isn’t friends with Katie Couric. Aniston, who appeared on E!’s Chelsea Lately on Wednesday to promote her upcoming film, We’re the Millers, slammed the veteran newswoman when host Chelsea Handler brought her up. “Katie Couric was asking me on her show about your wedding and I had to act like I didn’t even know you were engaged because I didn’t know that was out,” Handler said. “Then she was like, ‘Well, everyone knows about it!’ So, I felt really stupid.” Aniston responded, “What’s Katie Couric? Is she a legitimate journalist? Is she getting tabloidy? Wasn’t she on the Today show?”

YouTube to Open Production Studio in New York Next Year (TheWrap)
YouTube will open a production studio in New York next year, the company announced at VidCon on Thursday. The company complements similar facilities in London, Tokyo and Playa Vista, where YouTube opened a 41,000-square foot production, post-production and community event space last November.

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Dear CNN: Find A Female Media Critic (The Washington Post / Erik Wemple)
Politico’s Patrick Gavin Wednesday tweeted that he’d be hosting the long-running CNN program Reliable Sources Sunday. He is among the crowd that is filling in following the departure of Howard Kurtz for Fox News. Gavin’s guest-hosting stint follows that of George Washington University big shot and former CNN correspondent Frank Sesno, which followed that of NPR reporter David Folkenflik, which followed that of CNN contributor John Avlon. All of them precede the New York Times’ Brian Stelter. What could all of these light-complected males possibly have in common?

Modern Seinfeld Twitter Account Lands Creator A Sitcom Job (THR)
Twitter often costs people jobs, not helps land them. Former BuzzFeed writer Jack Moore’s feed got him staffed on Fox’s upcoming Alexis Bledel/Jason Ritter sitcom Us & Them, about online romance. Since its debut in December, his @seinfeldtoday — whose 617,000 followers include Jason Alexander — has become an industry favorite for its perfectly pitched contemporary loglines for the ’90s hit.

Eric Deggans Will Join NPR, Leave Tampa Bay Times (Poynter / MediaWire)
The versatile critic Eric Deggans will join NPR as its first-ever TV critic, Deggans writes in a blog post. “The new job is a continuation and amplification of the work I’ve already done as a freelance commentator for NPR, offering critical analysis of everything from media coverage of the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman controversies to picking out who really deserves Emmy nominations,” Deggans writes.

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Mediabistro Chats

Students feel that broadcast journalism is “safer” than print. Do you agree? mbist.ro/15xZs6W (via @FishbowlNY)

twitter JSpielvogel I think print encompasses a general understanding of journalism, so I don’t think broadcast is “safer” necessarily

twitter melissacmartin Definitely! Former broadcaster. I fear that we will lose the newspaper one day. Pity!

twitter bmmercer Forget “print” or “broadcast.” It’s just CONTENT. Distribute it however you want. We are all unified in “content.”

twitter anwoodgate Broadcast is for idiots, print is for thinkers

twitter Michele Simon It may seem like broadcast journalism is safer right now, but broadcast media is increasingly under fire for sensational news

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