Santa Barbara

Big layoffs at Santa Barbara News-Mess

Blogger Craig Smith has details of the latest convulsion at Wendy McCaw's Santa Barbara News-Press: 16 staffers, including the sports editor and life section editor. Sample:

A memo from co-publishers McCaw and Arthur von Wiesenberger was circulated to employees citing the need to down-size and consolidate. In what is believed to be the first public acknowledgment of the toll that the newsroom unrest and rancor has had on the paper's bottom line the memo mentioned both conditions in the newspaper industry generally and the unionization fight as reasons for the layoffs. A portion of the memo read:

"Here at the News-Press management has struggled with this national trend as well as with the onslaught of tactics used by the Teamsters Union which represents the newsroom unit of the paper. Between calling for subscribers to cancel the paper, which thousands did, and embroiling us in incessant litigation with unfounded charges, the News-Press has expended significant economic resources. understand, we will never give up our defense of the right of the ownership of the paper to control the content of its newspaper."

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