Today, the ax falls at ‘Times-Picayune’
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Today is the day the ax is falling at the New Orleans Times-Picayune.
Staff are either being handed severance packages or offered jobs at the recalibrated paper, which is scaling back its print schedule to three editions a week, a decision reached last month by New York-based parent company Advance Publications.
Those who are not invited to join the newly formed NOLA Media Group, which will produce the content for NOLA.com and the three-times-a-week Picayune, will be allowed to leave for the day. Two sources have told Gambit that severance for fired employees will be calculated at 1.5 weeks for every year of service, capped at one year's compensation.
At least three very familiar newsroom names, including award winners, have said they intend to take severance and/or don't expect to be invited to join NOLA Media Group.
As we reported last week, The Gambit, a local New Orleans alt-weekly, has become an essential source for news about the ongoing Times-Picayune saga. Allman told us of the changes that are underway: "Access to news is being lost here no matter how good the journalism is."
Meetings are also being held at the Alabama papers owned by Advance where similar changes are being put into effect.
Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal reports:
New Orleans business and community leaders are pressing the publisher of their city's only daily newspaper to reverse its decision to reduce print publication to three days a week.
They also are talking with investors, media companies and journalists about setting up print and digital alternatives, should the publisher go ahead with its plan for the Times-Picayune.
In other news...
Jack Shafer on what happens to the Tribune Co. post-bankruptcy. [Reuters]
The Associated Press vs. New Brunswick, N.J. [A.P.]
Lady Gaga to grace Vogue's September issue. [W.W.D.]
CQ and Roll Call are rolling toward a merger. [Adweek]
What's MSNBC's plan for 3 p.m.? [TV Newser]
Maybe not such a good idea to read the New York Post while operating a Metro North train? [New York Post]