While broadcasting companies have certainly done some staff cutting in recent months, it is newspapers who are really having to cut in the face of steep declines in ad revenues. Tribune has made cuts, the New York Times Company has made cuts, McClatchy has made cuts, Media General has made cuts (in TV as well, but more in print), and the list goes on. Now the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the flagship of Journal Communications, has announced a 10% workforce reduction, which would amount to about 130 of its 1,300 employees. The daily said the job cuts will be accomplished through a combination of voluntary and involuntary separations, as well as attrition.
“Our advertising customers – especially car dealers, real estate agents, hiring officials, retailers and financial institutions – have been battered by a ‘perfect storm’ of deteriorating credit conditions, slowing home sales, contracting company size and higher gas prices. All of these forces have driven ad spending down. As a result, Journal Sentinel ad revenues are running more than 12% below last year through May. At the same time, the costs of running our business are rising, with newsprint and fuel price increases becoming a concern,” said Betsy Brenner, President and COO of the Journal Communications publishing group.