A sad day for Alabama as 3 newspapers face a bloodbath…

I have watched people act as if the 3 major daily newspapers (Birmingham News, Huntsville Times and Mobile Press-Register) getting annihilated is a good thing… They are way wrong.

This is bad. Very bad. (I do not agree with the posting of their names and phone numbers.)

The Birmingham News fired more than 100 employees today, including more than 60 in the newsroom, as part of owner Advance’s new strategy. Their last day of work will be Sept. 30.

Said one employee who will be staying, “I’d rather be waterboarded than go into that office on a daily basis.”

As previously reported, managers held one-on-one meetings all day long to notify staffers whether they would be terminated with severance packages, asked to stay on or asked to apply for new jobs at the company.

Similar meetings took place at the Huntsville Times, the (Mobile) Press-Register and the Times-Picayune in New Orleans. All four newspapers will cut back to publication on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays in the fall, while ramping up content on recently redesigned news sites al.com and nola.com.

I can not stress enough how bad this is for Alabama….

Alabama’s three largest newspapers announced Tuesday they are cutting about 400 employees as part of their shift from daily publication toward online news.

The Birmingham News, The Huntsville Times, the Press-Register in Mobile and their al.com website started notifying employees whether they would be offered positions with two new operating companies. The changes come as the newspapers plan to reduce publication to three days this fall to put more emphasis on the website.

The two new operating companies, Alabama Media Group and Advance Central Services Alabama, said they plan to post more than 100 positions, and all current employees are eligible to apply.

From Today’s Times…

On May 24, Advance Publications announced the formation of a new media company – the Alabama Media Group, which will publish The Birmingham News ,

the Press-Register of Mobile, The Huntsville Times and al.com. The Alabama Media Group will launch this fall.

The change is designed to reshape how Alabama’s leading media companies deliver content in the Internet era. The Alabama Media Group will expand its news-gathering efforts around the clock, seven days a week, while offering enhanced printed newspapers on a schedule of three days a week. The newspapers will be home-delivered and sold in stores and other outlets on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays only.

This sucks.

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