Stanton concedes smaller staff on the way

In an interview with Mediabistro's David S. Hirschman, L.A. Times Editor Russ Stanton puts the good spin on the cuts that his newsroom expects to land soon. "I get that we may have to be a smaller news organization here at some point in the near future," Stanton says. "But that doesn't mean that we can't be a great paper and a great Web site." He claims morale is improving — "beginning to come back to where people are focused solely on doing great work and good stories and terrific journalism" — but I have to say, that rosy view is not reflected in anything I'm hearing out of the Times. A veteran who I've not heard complain before emailed me this week and said, "everybody is trying to get out." That's no doubt overstated, but the point is taken. Stanton, meanwhile, telegraphs that the newsroom will be redesigned to integrate the print and web journalists, and says he likes posting free stuff from readers:

I am pretty intrigued by citizen journalism. I think that there might be a way for us to do it that doesn't give away the hallowed territory of "who does the journalism." I think there are ways we can address that. One of the things the site is going to be rolling out over the next couple of months are neighborhood pages that are zip code-centric, and that have crime, real estate, and school test-score data that you can sort and play around with for your local area. And as part of those sites we'll have news from that smaller community, and we'll let users help us fill out that part of the thing. Also, we currently have a print entertainment guide that comes out on Thursday that's all about what to do in Southern California -- and online we involved users a great deal.

Via Fishbowl LA

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