More furloughs at Media General


Media General has instituted another round of mandatory furloughs for employees at its newspapers and television stations. The additional furlough days will bring the tally for the year to 15.

Mandatory furloughs have become almost common place for media companies in 2009, but it was an unusual move back in February when Media General announced that all employees would have to take off 10 days without pay in the first three quarters of the year. Several other companies in publishing and broadcasting have now made similar moves to save on payroll in the face of diminished ad sales.

The recession isn’t over, so Media General has now decreed that all employees will be furloughed without pay for an additional five days – one more this quarter and four in Q4. Employees in Florida had already been told that they would have to take off three more days without pay, so only two more are being added to their tally.

The 15 days of furlough in 2009 applies to all employees across the company’s newspapers, television stations and other operations.

CEO Marshall Morton reported in July that the company was beginning to see some encouraging signs for both the TV and newspaper business, but both still saw revenues down by 20%-plus in Q2.

RBR/TVBR observation: If you are in the Tampa-St. Pete are have you seen the daily Tampa Trib lately? Thin – real Thin.