Sunday, December 02, 2012

Nov. 26-Dec. 4 | Your News & Comments: Part 5

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62 comments:

  1. All the clamoring about layoffs, furloughs, etc., why does Gannett allow Sunday draws at Fl. Today be so ridiculous? SC carriers are coming in with 400-600 returns and yet the draws go up the next week. One carrire had 65 returns from one supermarket and yet the draws go UP! Really?

    Wasted paper and ink, the carriers, although they are now delivery agents, are complaining about unnecessary work. The stores are tired of handleing an excess amount of papers. I know G could care less about the carriers but to piss of the stores doesn't sound like a good thing.

    I'm sure this buffoonery is happening elsewhere also. One should figure out the unnecessary waste and fix things so maybe people don't have to take furloughs at the least.

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  2. A few of the smarties around here think those returns get calculated correctly in the circulation numbers. I would bet a Mitt Romney wager the top line gets counted correctly and those returns, the ones that get netted against circulation numbers, don't get counted correctly. Look at how the circ numbers are holding up, but ask the the clerks at the supermarket about the sales. In this market, the clerks will tell you counter sales are off 50% after teh price hikes, but the stacks of paper keep coming.

    This rot needs to be audited in a proper fashion.

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  3. Martore is not the only one who has a funny idea of "diversity" on their "leadership team." Of all the people Washburn hired since she got to Cincinnati and started laying off employees, she has not hired any African American. And the Enquirer has no African American on Buchanan's floor or in H.R.

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  4. What's an African American? Are they different from any other American?

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  5. No worries Wilmo! Corporate is sending "help" to fill the void in Advertising left by the fleeing Eric Mayberry.

    Not sure how that will help with the voids in Production, Circulation, Marketing, Human Resources, IT, New Business Development, or Digital. Then again, Stoney LaDouche is a man of many talents, I'm sure he can handle all of those!

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  6. We hired an African American banking reporter at Usa Today.. He vanished after two weeks. Did we hire on a need basis? I never saw an opening posted for New York or DC. Is Usa Today looking for another reporter to cover banking?

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  7. Charles Everett12/01/2012 2:01 PM

    Gannett's TV stations will stay on DirecTV under a new carriage agreement enacted late last night.

    I guess y'all are too busy worrying about newspapers to realize how important that is.

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  8. Yes, we'all are going to watching as post olympic and election ad spending evaporates your extra special big 2012 numbers and management bonusues.

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  9. @8:11: Would you like Hollis back?

    Regardless, you seem disinterested in “diversity” and more interested in hiring African-Americans period. That is unless you’re unaware of how females disportionately fill key management roles at the Enquirer (increasingly throughout Gannett too) or do you not consider male-to-female ratios relevant in your definition of it?

    Your silence on that suggests much, further exposing your true intent, one that presumably ignores applicants/candidates, experience, skills, etc. which easily dispels what you attack.

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  10. I have seen terrible hires and promotions @ Usa Today and Gannett. It has nothing to do with race or gender. Either we cannot atteact talent or we have trouble identifying it. That is a shame, because there are great people out there of all colors amd gender. When was the last time we made a great hire that delivered as promised. Anyone?

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  11. This is 8:11 and yes, I know Washburn hires twice the women than she hires men, and I know she has a problem working with men. That's another example of how they talk a good game about diversity but don't walk the walk. But she hasn't hired African American men OR women. She lays them off though.

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    1. Maybe she believes in hiring qualfied people versus just filling quotas.

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  12. This will all change with the hiring of Kevin Lord, our new HR King. He will make sure talent floods through the gannett gates. He will also institute productivity measures to make sure we are getting the most out of people.

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  13. You won't have to wait long. Look for the Enquirer to hire an African-American next week.

    To 2:57, it's true Cincinnati is dominated by females but gender isn't the problem. The problem is that the two women running it are god-awful managers and horrible people too. That ain't a gender thing.

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  14. She believes whatever gets her ahead in Gannett. I remember when Gannett held diversity seminars, and hired diversity trainers, and had diversity tee shirts made, and gave bonuses for hiring minorities. If diversity was still a priority for Gannett, Carolyn Washburn would be the world's biggest cheerleader for it.

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  15. There have been diversity bonuses at Gannett Since at least the '80s. Women, people of color, etc. What is the big deal unless you are a qualified white dude? You guys still rule the world.

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    1. There is absolutely no such thing as a diversity bonus. It's a myth created by folks like you. I'm a 58 year old white guy calling you out. No one ever got a bonus for hiring a minority and or female candidate. You sir are a liar.

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  16. Anonymous said...

    What's an African American? Are they different from any other American?

    12/01/2012 10:16 AM

    Yes, 10:16, they actually are. Within the lifetimes of many of us, African=Americans were prohibited from voting, legally barred from living in certain areas, not allowed to sit where they chose on public transportation....you get the idea.

    And those were just the legal barriers. There were and are many, many more cultural and social barriers to African-American advancement in this country.

    So yes, they ARE different. We can argue about how long affirmative action programs should go on. Many people think now that giving extra help to people based on poverty rather than race would be more effective. But your glib remark calls for a response.

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  17. Charles Everett12/01/2012 8:57 PM

    Gannett likes to preach "diversity". Their actual practice is sensationalism and sexism.

    At this moment the biggest sports story is Alabama defeating Georgia for the SEC Championship and a place in the National Championship game vs. Notre Dame. ESPN, CBS Sports and NBC Sports all lead with Alabama-Georgia. Fox Sports has it second but with a "breaking news" banner on the homepage. USAToday.com/sports has it dwarfed by a murder-suicide involving an NFL player. Not only that, 7 sidebars on said murder/suicide as "top stories". Of course, USAToday.com/sports must always include galleries of scantily clad cheerleaders. That's not only sexist, that's thoughtless.

    A Fortune 500 corporation with a woman as CEO deserves to be denounced as anti-woman. Even ESPN knows better than to splash a murder-suicide all over the homepage.

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  18. 8:57 huh??????

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  19. "Sir"? What a sexist assumption.

    Gannett was also the place that held sexual harassment seminars and is now the home of "Cool Balls."

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  20. 10:20 There are annual bonuses, based on a list of goals that may include circulation, web traffic, payables/receivables, days without injuries, contest awards and, yes, hitting certain targets around diversity-in-hiring/retention/promotion.

    Obviously, that's not the same thing as a bonus specifically for reaching diversity goals, however.

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  21. 10:20 dear 58 year old white guy. I have no idea what gannett property you work at, but I've been at five. Early in my career, there were four figure bonuses for promoting or hiring women to management positions. At another paper, they made a woman use a her maiden name because it sounded more ethnic. Less bonus, but there still was one for the hire. At two others, minorities, including african american and asian americans, were advanced over more qualified whites. An editor told me they specifically had to make their next hire a minority at one property. Gannett routinely benchmarks its diversity efforts and rewards managers for exceeding goals. Im not making value judgements here and don't really care if you call this hogwash.

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  22. 10:20 there is a difference between diversity goals and a diversity bonus. You are wrong. There has never been a diversity bonus. You are wrong.

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  23. Lots of diversions here.
    Many,mnay major corporations are considering moving employees to part time,cutting full time employees to the bone.They are preparing for financial meltdown in 2013.
    Shouldn't this be more of the focus.
    Will anyone at Gannett have full time job???

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  24. So does the Furlough program begin in the 1st period again? Some body has the answer..pony up boys. I need to plan my vacation for Janurary

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  25. I cannot speak to current corporate policy because I got out of Gannett several years ago. But having been a managing editor and executive editor at two sites, I can assure you from firsthand experience that hiring of minorities and promotion of women were rewarded by larger year-end bonuses. And back in the days when Mary Kay Blake was running corporate HR, we sometimes were told that we must fill an opening with a minority -- and that if we couldn't find one who was qualified, she would. I'm not criticizing necessarily, but I am stating what was fact back then.

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    1. This nation is truly done! Being qualified is no longer the criteria. Imagine being rushed into an emergency room and end up being treated by someone who got the job because someone in HR mandated filling a quota rather than focusing only on true qualifications. Well, its going on and one of reasons for America's falling in worldwide stature.

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    2. 11:53 since MKB NEVER was the head of corporate HR I think we can dismiss your post.

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  26. 11:53 Mary Kay Blake is now senior vice president of the Newseum, the Washington-based museum about news funded by the original Gannett Foundation, since renamed Freedom Forum.

    Previously she served as senior vice president of development for the Newseum and led its fundraising efforts as a public charity. She joined the Freedom Forum in 1999 to oversee its diversity efforts.

    According to the museum's most recent IRS tax return, she was paid $225,000 in wages, benefits and other compensation in 2011.

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  27. @8:11: Thanks for confirming that what you really care about isn’t diversity, just more African-Americans hires.

    Could the Enquirer, Gannett benefit from it?

    Yes, but your definition of diversity and how you’d employ it is a bastardization of it as you obviously care little about gender, nationalities, experience, skills, etc.….just the ethnicity of one U.S. group for its sole benefit.

    Unfortunately, stated belief systems like yours are why many quietly discount it all; the recent election whereby 98% of females age 18 to 29 within it voted for one party adds to why. So does how you would presumably terminate more qualified employees to achieve what you seek, and that is also unfortunate.


    (@4:42 – I couldn’t agree with you more.)

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  28. As an ex-Gannett Circ Director I can tell you that I would report monthly on the ethnic breakdown of our carrier force. There was no bonus involved. Never did find that Illusive Eskimo/Aleutian Islander carrier however. Maybe if I was on the West Coast…..

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    1. I was in a management spot st a Gannet newspaper and can tell you that there was always "pressure" to hire blacks and to keep percentages at certain levels but those levels were never stated. Competency went out the window and if such a "minority" did n ot perform, HR was scared to death to make moves to impose performance improvement programs, or, heaven forbid, get rid of someone.

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

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  30. All this ugliness about diversity is sad because Gannett once had the industry's proudest record of seeking out top minority hires.

    All that is nearly gone now. The sad truth is unless you try, diversity does not come easily.

    And yes, diversity DOES matter. Any news discussion should include all views, not just the same-same viewpoints of those raised and educated the same way.

    Of all the changes in Gannett, good and bad, the loss of diversity as a value is the one I miss the most.

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  31. 12:42, you are not the spokesperson for fair play, are you? Fair by your standards maybe, but there is a lot of equalization that needs to happen, pal, and you might want to take a look at things like the census. So while you are digging up your facts, why not go back just a tad longer and look at the vast injustice brought forth in this country by those who "founded" (aka "raped, pillaged and enslaved") this country?

    Maybe you think the clock started the day you were born, but a horrific and cruel history still stands as truth. Face it.

    It is your perfunctory indifference that needs to be changed, not the desire of your fellow citizens and colleagues to set things straight.

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  32. Mary Kay Blake was thankfully 'relieved' of her duties at the Newseum.

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  33. 2:25 I suppose you mean that she's no longer in charge of fundraising.

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  34. Since when did diversity slide back to just being about blacks? As usual this company is just so stuck in the 70s it's pathetic.

    There are Gannett markets where whites, men, over 40, over 50, etc are in the minority.

    Wake up to reality before you pretend to report on it.

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  35. Huge press problem in Fort Myers. The Sunday run didn't end until 7:30 a.m. and the papers were hours late. Many didn't get delivered until noon.

    http://www.news-press.com/article/20121202/NEWS01/121202002/Delivery-News-Press-late-today-due-technical-problems?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|

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  36. >>There are Gannett markets where whites, men, over 40, over 50, etc are in the minority. <<<

    Oh, spare me the violins. The discrimiantion against non-white Americans has been so overpowering and oppressive that the complaints about "what about white people?'' are truly absurd.

    If you expect African-Americans to make it on their own without help, then surely white Americans, who have every advantage, should be expected to do the same.

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  37. In Shreveport we are losing customers because we can't get the paper out on time.

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    1. That and the overwhelming mistakes ... And the fact your reporters don't ask the hard questions. To run a story about a mayor who has been in the hospital for six weeks and accept the response he is doing OK is laughable reporting.

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  38. @2:20: With all due respect, you should sit this discussion out as its clear this one stretches your intellect and biases as the fact of the matter is 8:11 is being called out because they have no interest in applying the same values and standards of fairness to other disadvantaged, under-represented groups, etc....just to African-Americans period.

    That’s the POINT you so obviously miss and or ignore.

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  39. Can we start a new post titled: "When the hard copy ends, what will your newsroom look like?"

    Traffic/ Rev/ Org structure

    That would splash a dose of reality on everyone.

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  40. Yes, American business has always hired based purely on qualifications, not connections. It's a shame that diversity and affirmative action brought an end to that. Civilization is finished.

    LOL

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  41. Does this all matter? When the hammer comes down and the layoffs begin, there will be no discremination to worry about.
    No one will have a job.
    Not only has print been dying in a moderate economy,wait until the 2013 recession hits.Fiscal cliff or not, this economy is on the way there regardless.

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  42. Where are the Hispanics, Native Americans and Asian Americans in management at Usa Today? Where are the African American women? Why are so few in positions of power?

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

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  44. That diversity=incompetency is a racist viewpoint, and that's what is the essence of the anti-diversity argument.

    Racism, pure and simple, and far worse than whatever occasional mistakes happen in an attempt to give everyone a fair shot.

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    1. Hires and retention should be based on qualifications for the job not some quota system.

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  45. 6:56 Workplace diversity programs do not equal incompetency -- when they're managed professionally and given adequate budgets.

    But as with all forms of hiring, and regardless of race/ethnicity and gender, employers get what they pay for. And Gannett is not known for paying the big bucks when it comes to recruiting and retention.

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  46. I dont know what MKB's title was with Gannett or Usa Today, but she was pretty far upmthe corporat HR chain and her hubby ran the Cinncinnati Enquirer pre Schoolmarm.

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  47. Blake's Newseum profile says she was vp for Gannett recruiting and placement. She also earned a lifetime diversity achievement award.

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  49. AZ Republic well as a long standing union member here I can't help but to think why am i paying into this union,We have nothing but the hope of keeping our manning clause and
    Hope to keep the pay we have now. We have no pension our seniority means nothing here our hiring chairman is a real piece of work and our brothers fight with each other.we have several non union members that receive almost all the benefits of being in the union but do not pay dues.as i see it if i make it 20 years i receive a lousy death benefit and if i make it to retirement i get a watch lol so what's the point of our union at this point im not sure.we have no none zero unity i watch as the union brothers shun non union members some more than others though i will do or say nothing for that could be my own fate.this was a great company at one time now it is every man or woman for them selves we don't make it inviting for non union members to join and yet we have little to offer

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  50. As always, this type of thread is incomplete without some mention of Brent Jones not only being hired but also getting promoted.

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  51. Is Brent Jones qualified to be making hiring decisions and being a conduit for hires? that is besides the point. Whoever is in the decision making posotion, Areall job prospects, not just minorities, thoroughly checked out? Have we even considered job tryouts to see if people are good enough to improve our editorial product? When we do make hires, are we hiring the right people for the jobs that need to be filled? These are the questions management needs to consider going forward.

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  52. BREAKING NEWS: US Presswire is changing its name to USA TODAY Sports Images, per a press release earlier today.

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  53. There have been several bad hires at Usa Today in the past couple of years that have nothing to do with Jones.

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  54. Press Release on US Presswire rebranding at:
    http://www.bizjournals.com/washington/prnewswire/press_releases/Virginia/2012/12/03/DC21187

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  55. Bieusse is quite the empire builder. How is the road to $300 million revenue going, big guy?

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