The Mood At WSJ: Demoralized

Lessons learned from official New York Times Rupert Murdoch beat reporter Richard Perez-Pena‘s piece on the demoralized employees of the Wall Street Journal:

  • “Newsroom employees answered phones with “News Corporation” and mimicked Mr. Murdoch’s Australian accent.”
  • Retiring Dow Jones exec Peter Kann compared the Journal to “a citidel trying to repel an invasion by tabloid barbarians.”
  • Dissident Bancroft family member Leslie Hill is the editorial staff’s great anti-Murdoch hope.
  • According to a WSJ reporter, the newspaper’s “culture of passion for the truth” will be caput under Murdoch — and nearly the whole staff feels that way.
  • CEO Dick Zannino is viewed by newsroom staff as “someone who does not value what they do.”
  • On a conference call between Journal editors and bureau chiefs (and how did the Times get to listen to that?), staffers eagerly speculated about the addition of Page 3 girls, done up as WSJ-style portraits, to the paper.
  • WSJ reporters and editors are approaching rival publications about jobs and even considering starting their own business news Web site.

Also in Journal news, the SEC is expected to file civil charges against former Dow Jones exec David Li shortly. Li is suspected of insider trading related to the News Corp. purchase.