Ludicrous layoffs

May 6, 2009

On the heels of the “classy” layoffs of three Baltimore Sun reporters and a photographer during a baseball game they were covering in Los Angeles, we have more of the same. (Correction: They were in Baltimore and perhaps trying to postpone the inevitable, but management still shouldn’t have given them the news over the phone IMHO.)

The chain that owns The Ann Arbor News and the Jackson Citizen Patriot offered buyouts and seriously encouraged people to take them. A source tells me that one woman at the Jackson Citizen Patriot, in her 30s, took the buyout, but it is not in effect until June or July. Meanwhile, the company announces plans to HIRE new employees in her department. She marches in to ask if she can stay on, but management turns her down. Apparently, they’re much more inclined to hire people at $26,000 that she will have to train.

No one likes what is happening in the industry right now, but there’s a right way and a wrong way to behave. Happily, there is a silver lining: my source tells me that most of the open positions remain vacant. No one wants to do all that work for so little.

Anyone else have any stories?


  1. Man, this sucker has gone viral. Not to defend the Sun’s management, but the game was in Baltimore, not L.A., and what I’ve read elsewhere suggests that those laid off while at the game in fact knew the layoffs were coming and therefore decided not to be in the office. Some of them, in fact, were not covering the game. They were just hanging out, basically.

    It’s still a raw deal to lay someone off over the phone, of course, but if that person’s trying to play “You can’t fire me if you can’t find me,” one does at least understand where management’s coming from. Even if they’re coming from the bowels of hell.

    But whether the employees in question were covering the game or not, it was in Baltimore.,57891.msg2438216.html#msg2438216

  2. Really? I saw that several places, but I guess I should have checked into it more. Thanks for the correction. I’ll add a note to the post.

    I agree they shouldn’t have tried to fight the inevitable, but the management should have at least waited until they were back in the audience. During the great purge at the NJ, they waited until one person (who was on vacation) came back before they gave her the bad news.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


CommentLuv badge

Anti-Spam Quiz: