An independent journal about the Gannett Co. and the news industry's digital transition
For Part 1 of this comment thread, please go here.
Director of Inside Sales for Gannett digital in NY has left to go to Yahoo. Good move as Gannett continues to dwindle down to nothing...
If USAT is sold or spun off as has been discussed here, what becomes of Detroit since we fall under USAT in the current structure? Would Detroit be packaged with USAT in a sale or be absorbed into the Commuity Publishing Division? Or?
Would buy some of Gannett's newspapers depend on where they are with consolidation. If they are a hub, good. We can work with that. If we are just buying a masthead, the brand has to be respected and strong with a spreadsheet of consistent local customers sticking with the company through the economic downturns. Only unwilling to pay 4X EBITA.
Pointroll is announcing that Rob Gatto is the new CEO. What a disaster. We thought Jason Tafler was bad, but this guy is the worst. He has no experience managing a P&L, he lives in Chicago, away from corporate headquarters and he knows nothing about technology.Good move Gannett. Looks like they are very desperate if they are making Rob our CEO. Now I am definitely getting out of here.
If Martore was going to sell Detroit and USA Today, which makes sense with Hunke sitting on the throne for both losers, why would she have Robin Pence spend hundreds of thousands on some coming media campaign to prove they are owned by Gannett?
Good question, 8:33 a.m. I continue to believe a sale or merger of GCI with another 'Net entity (Yahoo comes to mind) ala the AOL deal with HuffPo is a more likely event than a sale of USAT alone. Just my opinion -- no inside knowledge.
Thank God this company has come to its senses finally, and is prepared to walk away fromm USA Today. What a loser is this clunker, which has been draining my paper's budget for years to pay for its printing costs. At my paper, getting rid of this turkey ensures our future viability and my future employment. Please, make this come true.
Oh Brother 8:40It's going to take more than that aloneto save your precious Gannett job.God ,wake up ! This company is hell bent on laying off 10,000 more people.It sounds as though you are one who is not preparing for that to happen.Then ,by all means,wait for them to boot you out kicking and screaming.
All of the USCP should pray for the end of USA Today. It's the reason they keep draining as much blood from as they can. It's no secret that we're hurting. But guess what. The USCP is still profitable. But not nearly the cash cow it used to be. The palace can no longer hide it's incompetant management behind the revenue of the local paper. There's just not enough money anymore. And it'showing. Bad.
Apparently Gannett Digital has a lot of cash.....http://www.careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=ILGM0B&ff=21&APath=220.127.116.11.0&job_did=J8D5HN79QVD8CPCLP3Dhttp://www.careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?IPath=QHKCV0A&ff=21&APath=18.104.22.168.0&job_did=J8A3516TJSJ81PKJQ61 wow. just...wow.
Heard up tp 40 lay offs in Cincinnati, don't know where yet but some reports have circulation(home delivery and single copy) and production
8:04AM Why do you think they moved technology to Chicago, Rob is going to treat that office as the HQ now!!! Things in Conshy are going to get worse by the minute now, if you aren't looking you are kidding yourself.
Ripple6's website is definitely gone. When you go there, you're instantly redirected to PointRoll's site.
It would not suprise me about layoffs in circulation and production at the Cincinnati Enquirer. To many people standing around with their hands in their pockets playing pocket pool.
For a glimpse of what lies ahead for USCP, look at EW Scripps Co. In 2009, the board spun off the growth side of the business -- the cable TV operations, including HGTV, Food Channel, Travel Channel and some ragtag Web sites like Shopzilla etc. -- into a new publicly traded entity called Scripps Networks. That way the legacy businesses in decline, i.e. newspapers and TV stations, wouldn't hold back SNI from its rightful growth path. Unfortunately for Gannett, it doesn't have a name-dropping growth vehicle anywhere. The luster tarnishes after CareerBuilder.
If the buzz about USA Today’s is true; who would buy it and at what price considering…• Revenues, circulation and profits still shrink.• D.C.'s high overhead; though move out offers savings.• Less distribution, print control than even Gannett; the later is an area Gannett still exits.• Would USAT pages still be used; at what price?• And, what content does it offer that is already elsewhere, mostly for free?Regardless, Gannett should exit D.C. with a smaller corp staff to a key hub. It would profit from its real estate sales, lower its costs and finally place a majority of those producing content for America’s newspaper where they belong, with the people they cover.
Once the suits make their money from selling USA Today, we will be left alone. Yes, look at what happened at Scripps. I also want this if only to get someone to deal with the free garage parking, subsidized lunches and sports clubs that those who work at USA Today enjoy. We are scrambling out here, and they can't come up with anything breaking or even original in McLean.
PointRoll has the most childish group of adults I've ever seen. The announcement of Rob as CEO is a great thing for this compay and for you idiots purposely creating distractions on the call and the real moron yelling, "boo" over and over again on the call just shows what real children work at the company. Get your act together, get your pacifier and get the hell out if you hate it so much.
11:49 The only buyer I can imagine at the moment is Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. Through the WSJ, it already has the national footprint needed to print and distribute a paper. Plus, it's got Dow Jones Newswires plus the WSJ to provide content, as well as an advertising sales force to cross-sell, and a back office to handle billing, customer service, etc.USAT would be a mid-market consumer brand that could marry well with the WSJ and Barron's and, now The Daily. Remember, the Daily is tablet-only. USAT would provide yet another web presence as its print advertising revenue gets wrung out.But what's the most Murdoch would pay -- and what's the least Martore would accept?
PointRoll is a mess. A true mess. Good bye Jason. Rob...Good luck! You will need it.
Re: the ongoing saw about "subsidized lunches" at USA TODAY. That's bogus. If $7 for a smallish sandwich, a couple chips and a soda is subsidized, then I'd hate to pay full price.
I loved the laughing on the PointRoll call. it basically summarized the state of affairs at PointRoll. COMICAL MANAGEMENT!
Ok, so Rob Gatto is running PointRoll. How screwed up is that? He is a sales rep! Oh and now Danny "The Situation" Shapiro is going to be in charge of Sales on the East. While Sarah RipMaster is now in charge of all of Sales.WHAT A JOKE! The lunatics have taken over the asylum. Clearly Gannett has no idea what they just signed up for.
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Jason Tafler is crawling back home to Canada. He couldn't make it in the USA, so he is heading home.Good riddance for a sorry leader. Nice mess you left us here at PointRoll.
I like how Rob glossed over Max Mead. Sounds like that guy is going to get fired real soon.
Five newsroom resignations in Westchester in the past few weeks. Many more to follow as the new "leadership" further alienates a totally demoralized staff. Nice work CR.
Jim: Note that Murdoch's alleged interest in USA Today predated the launching of his Daily and purchase of the WSJ. I think Murdoch is now preoccupied with his new toys, and won't be interested in buying more.I wouldn't rule out Billy Dean myself. He's a visionary who runs things on the cheap and cleverly kept the Denver paper separate from his collapsing Media News. He has a Napoleonic complex and I think would be interested at getting USA Today cheap.
12:07. Yes, $7 for a smallish sandwich, a couple chips and a soda shows the subsidy. For lunch today I had a Reuben at $7.95, with a $2 Coke and left a $1 tip. (Do you leave tips in your cafe?). That's $10.95 for me, or $3.95 more that I paid than you did for about the same thing. Plus there is an estimated $5 in gasoline required to drive there, when your subsidized cafeteria is in the building.
Betcha someone in the Crystal Towers is kicking themselves today for not taking the $1 billion Murdoch offered for USA Today a decade ago. It was king of the hill back then. No longer. Too much competition has eroded its luster. I don't think they will find a buyer.
@10:39 and Jim: I've seen other posts about delivery driver layoffs since October-November. As I understand it, some drivers already are contract employees, so where is the significant savings? Is this a trend? Are publishers shrinking the delivery area or finding a cheaper outsourcing method now?
Other then cars.com and careerbuilder.com where we have partners to keep us in check is there any digital venture that GCI has gone into that can be considered a success? They killed ripple6 and pointroll. shoplocal is a joke. We had a couple of good locally produced moms sites out there so corporate decided to take them over so they could have them die a slow death. usatoday.com is a bit player when compared to yahoo, cnn, fox, and google. HS Sports.com was a total cluster. Can someone point to any successes?
Wow.... if true, the $1 billion offered by Murdock a decade ago for USA Today just proves TWO things:1. Gannett board were idiots not to take it.2. Murdock was an idiot for offering it.
dept. dissolved and movedCobra papers were promised by 12/24/10 not received until late Jan./11 with first payment duebenefit center in chaossupervisor states Jan.& Feb. payments are reduced due to terminationJan., Feb. and March already payed at the rate they requested, which was never in any communication with us. asked what will payments be thereafter and will the difference be credited in the next statement also asked what the amount would be thereafter supervisor gave one quote then corrected herself with the quote originally givensaid she would manually turn the benefits on 3 different times today benifit center site says it is turned on but the monthly payment is less then quoted or on payment slips although site says we have coverage the insurance company still has no record of ithealth care and need for critical medications does not help them to speed things up Gannett wants to save money see what happens when you outsource everything one person says send payments to one state another gives a different state and then a thirdfunny how these people still have jobs and those who worked hard for them do not all it becomes is a daily stream of phonecalls and nothing gets resolved regardless of federal laws concerning cobra to all you dedicated employees and former ones who gave it their all Gannett follows the mantra ask not what your company can do for you but what you can do for your company( or ex-company)if they cannot do the job they should not be employed there
Never hear about ContentOne - when is that going down the tubes?
If this were 5 years ago, I'd say Billy Dean would be a good prospect. But his empire is tottering now, and he's also been kicked upstairs to a chairman's role where he doesn't have as much to do with running the business day to day. I think his wheeling and dealing days are over.
Somewhere, deep in the bowels of Gannett Finance, a seasoned accounting veteran is trying to figure out how they can eliminate the lunch subsidy and return $7,275 annually to the bottom line. Stay tuned to this blog for further developments.
3:19, are you talking about the free lunches that have been served daily to the suits and their executive assistants for years???
Puh-leeze. No more debate about free/subsidized/costly lunches at the Crystal Palace. Take it from me, the overall cost of living in the D.C. area is sky-high.
Why shouldn't it be brought to everyone's attention outside Crystal Palace that a select group of fat cats there, who are highly compensated and can well afford to pay for their own lunches, are getting them for nothing? Talk about throwing away money in lieu of layoffs and furloughs!
Sorry, but I'm with 4:18. It's not just the multi-million dollar paychecks doled out by the Crystal Palace that gets my goat, but the idea these people paid super-salaries should get special subsidies not offered to anyone else in this company. I find it utterly disgusting and demoralizing to learn about these picayune giveaways..
We've had this discussion already -- literally, for years now. What is new here?
2:49 is correct about Singleton. Will never happen. Hedge fund kicked him upstairs; his longtime lieutenant did not get Dino's job and quit. Also, Singleton has struggled with multiple sclerosis for many years and the disease is taking a relentless toll. http://blogs.westword.com/latestword/2011/01/dean_singleton_interview_resign_ceo_medianews_group.phpJim makes a good point that Murdoch is about the only newspaper mogul that could get in the game, but I doubt it. USAT is in a death spiral. He'd rather use his spare change on "The Daily," which is a huge gamble.
Murdoch's got bigger things to worry about. Across the pond News International (UK unit of News Corp.) is enveloped in a phone-hacking scandal just as News Corp. is trying to gain control of BSkyB (UK-based satellite TV networks). The scandal has exposed Murdoch's close ties to the British government and threatens to tarnish the entire British newspaper industry. Murdoch himself had to cancel a planned appearance at Davos to deal with the scandal.Here in the US the Fox TV network is playing hardball with its affiliates over money the local stations get as retransmission consent. Fox is threatening to pull its shows off stations that don't collaborate.Given those headaches News Corp. may not want to make any big corporate moves like acquiring USA Today from Gannett.
Anonymous said...there are 464 westchester site and mt kisco and rockland. when the building is sold. and when they lease another building there will less than half employess going to make it in my opinion.this is and slow death. wakeup and smell the coffee people. I was born in the night but not last night.
The other alternative for buying USA Today is an investment firm. But their only interest would be in the break-up value, and if anyone thought they could do that, they would do it with the entire company. That they haven't attempted a takeover shows how bad off this company is. You have got to ask yourself, who wants print these days. Look at the Freedom sale of the Orange County Register and other properties. A decade ago, that was a prime property and very lucrative. Today....
According to the reports, Murdoch gave the Daily $30 million in startup costs, and is fronting the $25 million a year costs of running it. That is hardly a major investment for someone with his money. Like him or not, he's certainly got a golden touch on these matters. But my problem with Murdoch's purchase is that I just don't see how USA Today fits into anything he is doing. It is already non-union, which is how Murdoch has made his fortune buying heavily unionized papers, then breaking the unions.
6:28 See my 12:03. Murdoch can save by consolidating USAT and WSJ editorial, printing, distribution, ad sales, finance, etc. Plus, what GCI may regard as USAT's relatively low margins, Murdoch may see as gold. USAT must have somewhere around $200M in annual ad revenue plus another $200M-plus in circ revenue. That's a lot to work with.
Any cuts to come in Westchester will be simply the result of Economics 101: businesses don't cost more to operate than their owners expect to earn.At some point the staffing has to meet the circulation figures. The editorial staff was seriously bloated for years and years. Story counts were a joke and there were more editors per square foot than floor tiles.Those days are over. Classified is no longer a cash cow. National advertisers don't need the paper. Real estate and auto businesses have their own Web sites.Yet there are still some salaries way out of line, and the paper has eroded to a 5-minute read.The proverbial bottom line - Gannett Loves bottom lines! - is that the Journal News costs too much and delivers too little.It's simply way below what can survive in a sophisticated and crowded news market.
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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