Friday, January 13, 2012

Jan. 9-15 | Your News & Comments: Part 5

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51 comments:

  1. I am full of self hatred for spending most of my professional life with Gannett. I see this company destroying itself and can do nothing to stop it. Almost every day, another silly memo, proclamation or worthless management hire.

    Tired of gritting my teeth and faux smiling at the bosses. But I am beholden to the paycheck. No viable options. Just hoping to make it to last.

    Sorry, just feeling nostalgic for the days when it was actually fun to be a journalist.

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  2. I was thinking this morning they should start a new branding campaign to attract new talent.

    Here some ideas for the Within Reach brand.

    Gannett. With all our recent layoffs, the employee entrance is closer to Within Reach of your parking spot.

    Gannett. The unemployment office window is Within Reach.

    Gannett. That pink slip is within reach.

    Gannett. A cut in pays is now within reach.

    Gannett. I wish my Design Studio job was Within Reach, but alas it's in another state and I can't move and I live in small metro area where the newspaper was about the only journalism game in town, and I'm stuck.

    Okay that's a little wordy.

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  3. Here's the best one I thought of this morning. How about this?

    Gannett. Elaborate corporate pay is Within Reach for the 1 percent elite.

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  4. Gannett, where a vice presidency is within reach.

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  5. Florida Today had people go out yesterday checking on the single copy carriers. At the least it shows some people are still going through the motions of caring about sales. I can assure you the carriers do if no one else. It is still their livelyhood and hope to go on many years forward. Carriers know the market is still there and cannot explain to customers why the newspaper is turning it's back on them for some hairbrained digital only scheme.

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  6. An extra week of [unpaid] vacation is Within Reach.

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  7. 7:29 and 8:14 a.m. Nice copy.

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  8. Sorry gang, but those are $650,000 slogans at best. When you can distill it down to four words or less, that's when you can command those million dollar payouts.

    And that's News That's Real - What America Wants, well, It's All Within Reach.

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  9. Not to ignore 2:05. But Your Pain is Wirhin Reach.

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  10. Don't forget "It's all about you!"

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  11. Can you people please get back to work and stop bitching. Seriously. No one in America is happy at work. It's what you make of it, and sorry to say journalism has changed. This company is trying to stay viable. If we did things your way we'd ignore everything and go out of business.

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  12. 10:16, small correction.

    They'd ignore all the important stuff and spend hours or days picking at small things, like they have been doing here.

    Note who runs the place. Note how long he has been out of the loop. Many people here have yet to make that connection.

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  13. Who remembers this?

    The Real Life, Real News initiative. It won an internal Gannett award in 2004. Here's what the press release said at the time:

    “Real Life, Real News: Connecting with Readers’ Lives” was developed by a team of editors, publishers, representatives of the corporate Research Department and News Department executives.

    “Real Life, Real News is reporting on people, places and events significant in the everyday lives of readers and covering other news so that it directly connects to them,” according to the entry. “The program includes another breakthrough approach: respecting and writing more about the Moments of Life that are especially important in readers' lives.”

    The program was introduced to newsrooms through online training sessions and a dedicated Web site beginning in September, 2003. Each newsroom was asked to create a plan and make the program part of the culture by including components in job descriptions and performance evaluations.

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  14. Who remembers this?

    The Real Life, Real News initiative. It won an internal Gannett award in 2004. Here's what the press release said at the time:

    “Real Life, Real News: Connecting with Readers’ Lives” was developed by a team of editors, publishers, representatives of the corporate Research Department and News Department executives.

    “Real Life, Real News is reporting on people, places and events significant in the everyday lives of readers and covering other news so that it directly connects to them,” according to the entry. “The program includes another breakthrough approach: respecting and writing more about the Moments of Life that are especially important in readers' lives.”

    The program was introduced to newsrooms through online training sessions and a dedicated Web site beginning in September, 2003. Each newsroom was asked to create a plan and make the program part of the culture by including components in job descriptions and performance evaluations.

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  15. Gotta love folks who use dismissive terms like "you people." At least they're up front with their sweeping condescension.

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  16. Just another initiative, like the 10 before and the 10 after, that when announcing it, our editor managed to say with a straight face, "And this is not a passing fad."

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  17. 10:16 is just one of too many at the newspapers who don't realize that not all of us work the gravy shift of M-F 9-5.

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  18. Is Gannett getting ready to sell off USAT? All the changes that are taking place i.e. all GM positions have been eliminated and the people who held those positions have been moved down the ranking positions of Marketing and Circulation. CD's & CM's being moved into other Gannett papers. There's more to this story but I'll stop here and wait for some feedback from other markets within USAT. Bring it on, please!

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  19. Am I the only loyal dummy Gannett employee who still subscribes to their printed product just to help the company's numbers and bottom line after years of no pay raises and furloughs?

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  20. 11:51-No. There must be two of us.

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  21. If Gannett is going to sell USAT, it better do it soon. The brand is spiraling downward, the talented people are fleeing and no one in their right mind would want to accept a job offer from that place. Believe me, USAT is running on fumes, still living off of its good reputation built by some good people. But in the last three years, USAT has done everything to destroy the place, the people and the product. Nice building, though, if that's your thing. Personally, I prefer working with experienced, vibrant people with a passion for their craft. Buildings, gyms, cafes, don't really matter to me. But they might help with any potential sale, I guess.

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  22. Who on God's earth would buy USA Today? You guys need to lay off the hash ...

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  23. 10 or 15 years ago, if there were blogs like this, you would never have seen the amount of negative comments about USA Today that you do today. Sure, there have always been some haters or sour grapes people, but the overwhelming opinion of that paper -- from employees who seemingly have worked there for a fair amount of time -- is astonishing. I know a couple people who work there and their opinions match up pretty well with all the bashing that goes on here.

    I say, where there is smoke there is fire. Something is very wrong at the nation's newspaper. Something more than just the related souring of the newspaper biz. I simply don't sense that pride that people once had in working there...at least not in the circles I travel or in what I am reading both in print and online. Guessing that the gutting of the place, and the way in which it was and is being done, has just created a journalistic dead zone. What a shame. But it shouldn't surprise anyone familiar with Gannett. It is a ruthless corporation...and always has been. Managers will smile and pat you on the back one day, and stab you the next. That's just the culture there. Plain and simple. If you want to be any kind of supervisor at any Gannett property, you better have a cold heart, no loyalty and zero ability to evaluate talent. Glad I left before the economy made things even more inhumane.

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  24. I'd love to get back to work and quit bitchin', 10:16, but I've got a furlough day so the company can square paying $37 million in go-away money last year... to a man who not only presided over our stock price dropping to 20% of its value - but also helped hand-pick his successor.

    So Ima gonna keepa beechin til I's getta go back workin!

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  25. 11:51, I was just as dumb. Even though I could pick up the paper free on-site, I nearly always bought it. Even called into the Circ folks on my own dime when I'd see an empty rack. Faithfully kept all my Gannett stock even while the managers were dumping theirs en masse. A really loyal Boy Scout, I was. In retrospect, what an idiot, what misplaced ethics for an essentially unethical company who took that loyalty and my career to RIF Land. They didn't care then, they don't now.

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  26. In a big city like Cincinnati, one would expect news to be rotated frequently on the web site. Surprised to see a story from Jan. 6 about a man stealing an FBI vehicle still the big story on the home page under crime.
    Talk about old news.

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  27. Bottom line is this: The entire compnay is milking every last penny they can until the ship sinks. Were i work, nobody, and I mean nobody gives a shit any more. We just put in our hours and go home..no extra efort any more no nothing. Why, because they don't care about a number if it is not a dollar sign, and folks were not dollar signs, just number waiting to be canned...my approach is simply to show up and get by. The place sucks and I will be dammed if I am gong to kill myself anymore for these pricks..the hell with the way the paper looks, i could give a shit at this point..But that's me

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  28. The newspaper industry is SAVED!!! Why sell newspapers for a buck or $3 when you can sell THIS for $5!!!

    Brilliant!!!

    http://www.editorandpublisher.com/TopStories/Article/Newspaper-Partners-With-Advertisers-To-Create-Memorable-Decks-Of-Cards

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  29. 11:11 is not alone. Gannett does not give a damn about the employees. The big shot in Virginia are raiding the company as are the suits at the papers around the country. Like so many, I go to work on the stroke of.starting time, take every break I'm entitled to then leave exactly at quitting time. If I'm not done with.something, it will have to wait for the next day. I go home, forget the place and waont answer any calls from work. Unlike our sales people who are out doing personal stuff on company clock, at least I put in a day of work hot my money....but nothing extra.

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  30. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  31. 3:03 If you're going to post another comment about Florida Today -- and there have been an awful lot of them recently -- then please find something other than: "Another boring day at Florida Today..."

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  32. Most Gannetters want to get away,
    Take a buyout package if they could.
    Hop a job at the New York Times or even Dollywood.
    But I’m drinkin’ the kool-aid of every Gannett BS line.
    I’m in a kool-aid state of mind.

    I’ve seen all of Gannett’s stars in their fancy cars and board limousines.
    Been high off all their memos while they count their green.
    I know what they’re needin’, but I won’t work more past my time.
    I’m in a kool-aid state of mind.

    It comes down to reality, and its fine with most cause McLean’s let it slide.
    I don’t care if sales are down or if Gannett stocks slide.
    I don’t have any reaaons.
    I left them all behind.
    I’m in a kool-aid state of mind.

    I’m just drinkin’ the kool-aid and limiting my work time.
    Cause work’s better in a kool-aid state of mind.

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  33. Newspapers: No. 2 on the chart of largest projected declined industries from 2008-2018.

    No. 1: Semiconductor and other electronic component manufacturing.

    Source: US Dept of Labor

    Lifeboats: What you need to jump into

    Denial: Not a river in Egypt

    2012 Resolution: Let's all get out and assist as many others to a new job as possible. (I've hired 4 of the laid-off. Am one myself.) But let's all be in this together! And stop sniping!

    Thanks for letting me have my say.

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  35. Kool I, i LIKE IT. But my Bev of choice is Beer , so I will drink my beer and let the phone ring off the hook, thank god for caller ID. Let my manager handle the bull shit, that what he get paid for. This person is not going above and beyond no more..the press can break down and if I am the one who can fix ix it, good luck, I will be at home drinking my beer and letting them sweat like the dogs that they are:)

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  37. Got a call at 8 a.m. today from an editor wanting me to run out and take a quick photo of a bad accident. Had wife answer the phone though and inform the caller I could not talk to hi9m because I was on furlough. Such is the Gannett way...

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  39. All is well at Florida Today. Next week, most newsroom employees will receive new iPhones on the company dime. The push is on for digital enhancements that will entice subscribers. This paper always has been one of GCI's innovators with technology.
    GCI is making an attempt to be relevant in a digital world. That's to be applauded. I have a feeling most of the complainers on the blog are at smaller papers. I am aware that Florida Today is not the largest, but it is among the top 15. And we've been recognized -- outside the company, mind you -- for innovation.

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  40. 2:22 - Editor and Publisher has an $8 cover price and I believe October was supposed to be the last printed edition ever. That yellow shocker on my desk must be a figment of my imagination. (Confidential to M.B. - cover story is about high power marketing, good stuff there! Fill in 'content and general manager' if E&P doesn't roll off your elitist tongue.)

    I've never paid a cent but they keep asking if I'd like too. Why should I when I can get the print version for free?

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  42. It is a very sad thing that has happened and is happening to USA TODAY. Unfortunately, the damage is done and there is no turning back now. I hope the people responsible write a book about it one day and tell the real story about why so many of the people who helped build the company were cast aside for no good reason, why the most incompetent people have been rewarded with big titles and new people brought in who have no clue how to turn things around. Change for change sake does not turn a company around and the change at USA TODAY has been so drastic that it's making the company implode. Someone, please help me understand..WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY? Nothing positive has come from all of this.

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  43. 2:05 a.m. Anguished voice in the night. Your good work has helped many. As you see in today's thread, you are not alone. The only way I know to empower myself is to watch my health and look for another job. I have so many friends whose lives have been devastated by layoffs. Good luck to us all.

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  44. 6:47 I remove comments -- such as your very, very long one about Florida Today -- that involve name-calling. Example: Calling a woman a dragon.

    Critiques are fine. But please write like an adult.

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  45. Re: 4:43PM - I think your 8AM wake up call about shooting something may have been a violation of the furlough rules. At my Gannett site we are not allowed ANY contact with the office. We're supposed to leave an out of office message on email and they are not supposed to contact us. Maybe you should talk to your local HR (if you have one) and see if you can get another day off.

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  46. 5:44 - How long ago was Florida Today recognized for being innovative? iPads have been around for several years. If Gannett was on top of the game and ahead of all the competition, newsrooms would have been supplied with iPhones and iPads about five years ago. I don't think that equipment is high tech enough to compete with the likes of Huffington Post.

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  47. I think alot of Gannett local papers have dragon ladies--so what ?

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  48. Regarding 5:44, no matter how many digital enhancements Florida Today may have, the content is not there and there is not sufficient staff on hand to gather and produce it. Management lacks true vision and dances to the corporate tune. If Gannett orders a reduction in freelance funds, management will have no choice but to accept it. If management orders more staffing cuts, management will meekly go along with it. Technology is fine, but content is king and sadly, Florida Today is no longer an innovator. The new products are not popular and price hikes for print and a paywall for digital will drive readers to other media sources.

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  49. If I led this company, I would care about the quality of life my employees had and care about integrity.

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  50. 4:59 do you believe that GE general managers or Google VPs tell corporate leaders they won't follow directives? Are you that naive? It's time to take a business course and educate yourself. You're so brave? On Monday go tell your boss you refuse to follow all orders from here on. Please update us

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  51. 11:59 Precisely. And you'd run it into the ground in about a week. Oh well, that's the way it be.

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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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