We told you back in March about the Ann Arbor News closing and moving online to AnnArbor.com; ‘course, that’s not entirely accurate, since AnnArbor.com will be printing twice a week. We’re thinking the “closure” statement reflects not the actual death of print but a)the new philosophy—they’ll be “reverse-publishing” instead of treating Web as an afterthought, and b) the job cuts that are certain to result.
Back in March, publisher Laurel Champion invited the 272 Ann Arbor News employees to apply for positions at the online only venture, though she said that job losses would be inevitable.
So how many of those 272 took her up on her offer? How many got jobs?
Not too many.
AnnArbor.com announced its first hire yesterday: former Ann Arbor News Business Team Leader Stefenie Murray. She’s assumed the role of Community Director, “lead[ing] the development of community content for the new company, including coverage of neighborhoods, as well as topics that range from food to parenting to the cultural interests of teens and young adults.”
“… Murray will recruit a community advisory panel that will help shape the development of AnnArbor.com.
She also will oversee efforts to provide deeper, more intensely local coverage of neighborhoods that combines traditional reporting with information contributed by neighborhood residents.
In addition, she will cultivate community content for lifestyle topics…”
Sounds like a true new media position: editing and connecting with readers.
Meanwhile, the other 271 Ann Arbor News employees either didn’t want the new gigs or weren’t digitally-savvy enough: the company, which launches its site in July, just posted a new ad for a digital journalist on our job boards.
Murray didn’t respond to a request for comment on her new role.