An independent journal about the Gannett Co. and the news industry's digital transition
Let's see. Retailer giant WalMart just bought a mobile app-building company. Accounting giant Deloitte just bought a mobile app-building company. Media giant Gannett? They just outsourced their social media (commenting) audience to Facebook. Anybody else see the handwriting on the wall?
IN OHIO, the general manager of the News-Messenger at Fremont and the News Herald at Port Clinton was shown the door Wednesday afternoon by a couple of bigwigs from MNCO, Media Network of Central Ohio. She had been publisher of the two publication until she was knocked down to the GM title a year or so ago.
Back to the Trujillo - Faherty topic. John is a good reporter and a damn nice guy. People should give him a chance before they start bashing him. It's true that he does a lot of high profile stories but he also does a lot of "grunt" work, like weather stories. And the Republic does a lot of weather stories because the 1A desk is hopelessly inept and incapable of planning more than a day out. If he's asked to do night cops he will. (Although he doesn't at the Republic because the Republic doesn't have a night cops beat. We have interns.) Laura is a good editor who has to wrangle a bunch of prima donnas in her department. She's the features editor, but her influence extends well beyond features. Her reporters took the lead on the Gabby Giffords shooting, the biggest news story in Arizona last year. Again, she deserves a chance before people start dumping on her.
>>Anybody else see the handwriting on the wall?<<I saw the handwriting when I shared logo designs for USAT's 25th anniversary with another artist years ago, and he switched the colors, submitted the art and his design was "chosen" behind closed doors by management. Karma has a way of balancing justice with these losers.
Another USA TODAY marketing person resigned this week, that's two in two months. Can't say the regime is keeping good talent - HR wake up! Can't look good for Sandra.
I wonder how the paywalls will work in relation to shared content.Delaware will soon have a paywall; but after the 2008 layoffs, Delaware started providing all Eagles and Phillies coverage to the Cherry Hill Couier-Post, which does not appear to be in line for a paywall.Could be interesting.
Financial Times just bought a company to build mobile apps that allows them to bypass Apple and Apple's 30% cut. Gannett should be investing in stuff like this. http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/mediawire/158241/financial-times-buys-company-that-enabled-its-end-run-around-apple/(Maybe they are and just not telling anyone?)
>>>Financial Times just bought a company to build mobile apps that allows them to bypass Apple and Apple's 30% cut. Gannett should be investing in stuff like this. <<<The disadvantage is the Times' app won't be in the App Store; the higher volume of app sales would more than make up the 30% cut to Apple.
In other words, the Times' new mobile app company would have to out-market and out-brand the nation's top company, Apple, online and the 350+ stores world-wide. But competition is good for the consumer, ultimately; I'd like to see how this plays out.
@8:21: Hmmm...the start of the stealth January layoffs? Wonder what MNCO will do with the managment structure of those papers. Let's not forget, with all the distractions, that layoff lists may be circulating. Jim, any new intel?
Twentysomething Deloitte crew is making decisions on budget cuts and layoffs
Amir should get Crybaby of the Year honors.My goodness, it's called a newsroom. They changed your color scheme and you're STILL talking about it?No wonder you didn't fit in.
Re: Trujillo. Movement, both in and out of organizations, accelerates advancement. Typically organizations take people for granted and give them nominal promotions, if any, and raises, while competing organizations are always on the lookout to raid such people and reward them accordingly. Not knowing any of the particulars in Phoenix, Trujillo no doubt weighed the pluses of a move to a No. 2 spot against the minuses of working for blithering wretches in Washburn and Buchanan and alongside dud editors at almost every turn. She must figure that three or so years doing time in Cincinnati will pay off with a promotion to wherever it is she really wants to be. Cincinnati ain't it.
@11:01, clearly YOU lack integrity. Amir's design was "stolen", that's the point, not that the colors were changed. He has a point. Lots of folks at Gannett like to "steal" the ideas of others.
Regarding earlier posts pertaining to Gannett outsourcing versus buying app companies like the "real" big guys, my guess is Gannett is bracing for financial reports this year that may not look great (layoffs nothwithstanding) and additional acquisitions may drain financials. But it also makes you wonder knowing digital really is the future is Gannett really poised to be involved? Lots of new high paid Gannett corporate people versus previous years, is there a ROI?
It wasn't the newsroom, but 5th floor Brand Marketing. I shared my main designs with another artist and we talked about ideas for the final project. A month later management decided who won the competition and my design was chosen (now using USAT brrand colors and created in a vector program). I walked to Vice President Susan Lavington's office and left her a copy of the two designs, side-by-side. I mentioned it in my review. Simply amazing.
Is anyone still left at USA TODAY's production dept at HeadQuarters? I heard that they were all let go, yesterday?
Indy Star is ordered to trial in the age discrimination suit filed by laid-of columnist Susan Guyett (age 59).This should be an interesting case to follow.http://bit.ly/xZdLxF
11:20 is correct. I once worked with a guy on a workflow design. The thing was essentially my baby. He was new and had little experience regarding what was needed, but my manager thought I should mentor him. I also wrote and submitted the proposal. These were my ideas. Yet astoundingly, my manager then gave the guy complete credit (a cash bonus!), and the guy gladly took it, not one word to me. Sickening.
12:19 - I hope more people are following her lead.
11:20 & 12:27, I went through a series of similar situations at Gannett. After many years, I discovered that there was a network of workers that recommeded their friends (and family) for open job-positions. (You scratch my back... I scratch yours.) Unfortunately, when these people got into the company and they had thier own agenda.
"""I walked to Vice President Susan Lavington's office and left her a copy of the two designs, side-by-side. I mentioned it in my review. Simply amazing. """ Oh so what? You've been carrying on about this supposed "incident" for more than two years now.Everything in a newsroom, even when it comes to marketing, are ideas for the common good and if you think yours got "stolen" then it means you obviously have very little else going on.Seriously, if you want intellectual property, go write a book. Otherwise, work together with people instead of jealously holding on to your color scheme.Wow.
1:13. It's very common to see G bigwigs get jobs for their kids, etc. Jim considers naming names off limits, which I understand. But there are some obvious examples of nepotism resulting in talented people being passed over in favor of mediocre junior.
You're just as clueless as the Senior Director and Manager of 5th Floor Brand Marketing. Working on a book ain't a bad idea.
Certainly better than getting a job! make sure to bring your half-Gannett ID badge with you.
2:08, why so defensive? When a person is wronged, it usually doesn't go away quickly. This is why so many people working for Gannett can't seem to let go. Doesn't make for a great working situation and why this blog won't go away anytime soon. Corporate breeds this type of atmosphere. Why anyone continues to work there, I'll never understand.
It won't be long until all marketing is centralized from india.
Is there a gag order that says us Gannett employees can't talk about our disenchantment with the impending paywall situation? I've love to say how I really feel, but don't want to get put on the you-know-what list as a result.
@1:35, you're wrong. There was a bonus tied to this project, the way I read the post, so it wasn't something "for the good of all", or teamwork, it was just downright stealing. You must be guilty of this, too, I'm guessing.
Anonymous said... Several employees of the Detroit News have been without health care benefits as of Jan. 1 thanks to a Gannett Benefits snafu. No one was alerted to that fact and in some instances people have been turned away from hospitals and medical appts for procedures. Prescriptions are also not being covered. Gannett has been slow to fix the problem without so much as an apology. Nothing like spending your valuable work time on hold between health care provider and Gannett Benefits. Happy new year. 1/05/2012 3:10 PM
There are people who refuse to work themselves, and will take credit for the efforts of others... We had one extreme case, in the company that I work for. There was an individual that always had time to socialize, pass-the-buck and take credit. As time progressed, it was discovered that she had also lied on her initial application to the company. Her application boasted of a college degree. However, in reality, she had failed out of the eigth-grade and didn't even have the general requirements for her management position. She also hired her family and friends for open positions. A despicable group of degenerates. So, this example is living proof that something can slip under the radar, in even the best of companies. The good part of this story is, that she was caught and convicted. So, there is some justice in the world and let's hope there is a little bit more.
On health benefits: Gannett just got around to sending out a letter that people with Anthem/Empire Blue Cross were being switched to United HealthCare. (Not sure if other providers were dropped as well.) People were supposed to receive new insurance cards, ID numbers, etc. Some accounts never made it from one computer to another. No cards. No record of having insurance. And good luck sorting that out with the outsourced Gannett Benefits outfit. Then, if you do, watch how many of your doctors do not take United HealthCare. Old coverage evaporated Jan. 1.
One thing we know Banikarim can do is self-promote. She announced today another gathering of USAT staffers for later this month to look at her latest branding work. Can't wait for that one. No need for a light show....just a single spotlight on her will do just fine.
4:44, yep! I never received ANY notice. None. Whatsoever. I asked Hopkins about this switch, but at the time he had no information, so evidently I was one of the early ones to get broadsided. And, nope, my doctor, the best doctor I've ever had, doesn't take United HealthCare. Sweet.
5:40, again: for clarification I'm on COBRA. That is, dead to the world as far as Gannett is concerned, even though COBRA is tied to that former employment by law.
Any of the HQ USAT Production out there? How many of you guys are left?
5:50, that makes no sense. You must be one of the many here who don't understand how benefits work.
Detroit News?? Gannett benefits?? Why do you get Gannett benefits? You aren't a Gannett paper.
Amir, I noticed that the name you had mentioned "S.L" is no longer with the company. I think her position was terminated a couple of years ago, the same day they eliminated ----- Dewar.
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6:43 The News employees may get their benefits through the joint operating agency, which handles all the business functions for the two Detroit newspapers.
Susan Lavington used to have the job now held by Michek.
5:40 considering UHC is now the largest network in the country it may be time to question your doctor. All my do ties are in it
4:44 my new cards arrived the last week in December. Saw my doctor yesterday. No problems what so ever!
Why weren't employees notified back in the fall that their Anthem BCBS coverage would switch over to United HealthCare? What's wrong with Benefits and you, Roxanne Horning?
Attention: Maryam Banikarim!USA Today is publishing more of that elitist content you downplayed with AdAge.Here's the latest.
Hey 4:29 The same thing happened at The Journal News years back. They hired a new VP of Human Resources who turned out to not be who she claimed either- had a bunch of stuff on her resume that was totally fabricated. Of course, they didn't do much research into her background (somebody else had to let them in on it) even tho they were hiring for a VP position. She was terminated shortly after the "discovery".
8:50 I remove comments that make fun of people's names.
8:25 pleeeeease! How could you not know? Material came directly to our homes, emails went out and announcements were made.
Jim, I can't type Amir's name with a straight face. But because you asked so nicely ...Amir, what happened to the other story where you were screwing off and doing a fake page instead of working? That one is much better and more amusing.
I just watched a report on ABC news that claimed driving while you have a cold is as dangerous as driving after four shots of whiskey. They suggest that if you have a cold rather than driving to work you should just call in sick. As a part time driver for Gannett I can't afford to call in sick. I get no sick days or personal days. So I well need to go in to work sick and risk not only others safety on the road but that my co workers may catch my cold too. They can never tell me it is important for there employees to take time off or vacations when they won't offer any to me.
I'd say working for Gannett requires four shots of whiskey these days ....
I'm also on COBRA and we were never notified of open enrollment or the switch to UHC. I happened to go look at the website after folks started talking about it here and noticed it. I know our site was still on Anthem because our major referral hospital did not take UHC. I have one doc who doesn't take it but I don't see him until Feb so it won't matter. As of Feb 1 I'll have benefits through the local BCBS company. Good-bye United Death Care (although my company is looking at switching all of our in-state employees to UHC now that the ban has been lifted at the hospital; all the rest of our company is on UHC).
I was one of the employees laid off in June. I finally got what was left of my pension out of Gannett's clutches and I'll soon be losing their supplimental pay.Finding out how much COBRA is a month for my family and me was a shock.What angers me now is that Gannett sends me health care documents and semi-threatening bills for over $1000 worth of benefits I don't have, as if I were retired from Gannett and not laid off. Two registered letters and numerous phone calls haven't stopped their correspondence since summer.On a call yesterday to their number, one of the senior health representatives asked me what it was I wanted.
10:14 - what do you mean by the calls/bills for benefits you don't have? I don't understand, still working for my Gannett paper...but always want to be prepared for when I'm in your shoes....
Viginia Law Lesson about Termination: Even if you are with at-will employee, you still cannot be fired for reasons that are illegal under state and federal law. In these situations, the government has decided to make an exception to the general rule of at-will employment.You cannot be fired because you have complained about illegal activity (workplace crimes), about discrimination or harassment, or about health and safety violations in the workplace.
Dear 9:52, considering who (still barely) employs us do we really need additional depressants like whiskey ? Might I recommend hallucinogens. More specifically bong hits, BIG ONES and well more than four,.....
>>Amir, what happened to the other story where you were screwing off and doing a fake page instead of working? That one is much better and more amusing.<<I can't keep a straight face for any of the nonsense either. A "going away" or dedication page, not a fake page, for Steve Anderson, a friend of mine in HR back when we had Christmas parties. I gathered photos and materials like I usually do for the glossy 1A reprint, and this Senior Director clown wrote me up because I went to the 6th floor to ask for photos from Ms. Zimmerman, who just left the department days ago. Everyone in Brand Marketing loved the page, especially Steve. I had built around 5 pages to aclaim with no incidents. There are too many stories and glad I escaped.
Gannett has rarely taken into account what is legal, from my view of things at the Fort Collins Coloradoan. I've been here several years, and there are laws being broken flagrantly in every area from OSHA to labor issues.
Amir, It's okay that you made a "tribute page" to a departing employee. I am from another part of the company, and we always made tribute-pages for employees who had departed. It's even a morale booster for those that are still with the company... It's nice to send someone off with warm wishes from the folks at the company. I know you had experienced a situation in which you were wronged. I have seen the same types of scenarios over and over again... I don't know if you'll find any solace in knowing that others have experienced the same scenarios in the workplace(s). You seem like a talented and motivated individual, and although it may not make sense to you now, I will tell you... There are people that resent others who possess things they can never rightfully have/attain. … And, those people get a “rise” out of taking it away from the rightful owners. The best thing that we can do, to prevent these type of scenarios is to make sure we have the appropriate screening checks for job-applicants. Gannett also needs to audit any employees that were not appropriatly screened prior to employment.
Part of the problem is revenge and jealousy with particular management. The delay in Steve's page was due to some people not wanting it to be made, in my opinion, and I wanted to hurry and get it finished in time. Office politics could take a hike.
12:57, So true. It may have to do with the fact that the departing employee was from HR. He may have had to deal with disciplinary issues from individuals in that group.
11:19- What I mean is that despite being on COBRA for healthcare because I was laid off, Gannett is also sending me bills for healthcare. When I call to talk to reps, they either say they'll correct it or they don't understand why my account is having these problems. Every couple of months, Gannett sends me a bill for health, vision and dental benfits that run over $1200 dollars a month and which I am not taking. These are benefits you would receive if you were retired from the company.Some of the notices are vaguely threatening. When I call the reps will tell me to ignore any bills emanating from Pittsburg, but it still concerns me. Who knows what it might actually be doing to my credit to keep getting bogus bills like these.
Steve was Director of Communications in Brand Marketing 6th floor, my apologies. Individuals on 5th floor Brand Marketing tried to discourage his tribute page.
Jim says: "Proceed with caution; this is a free-for-all comment zone. I try to correct or clarify incorrect information. But I can't catch everything. Please keep your posts focused on Gannett and media-related subjects. Note that I occasionally review comments in advance, to reject inappropriate ones. And I ignore hostile posters, and recommend you do, too."
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