Media General lays off 16 percent at Tampa Tribune and community newspapers

TBO.com | St. Petersburg Times
The website affiliated with The Tampa Tribune and WFLA-TV reports that 165 people are being notified that they’ll lose their jobs at the Tribune, its affiliated community newspapers, and TBO.com. WFLA will not be affected. Among the cuts:

  • Tribune TV critic Walt Belcher, who posted on Facebook: “My 35 years at The Tribune was a great ride. I probably have more bylines than anyone in the history of the paper – and the way things are going, no one will ever top that. It was never work. It was fun.”
  • Loren Omoto, managing editor of TBO.com, who wrote on Facebook: “In the grand tradition of ‘revenue enhancement,’ ‘sanitation engineering’ and ‘celebration of life,’ I’m now embarked on my next ‘life stage transition.’ “

The St. Petersburg Times’ Eric Deggans reports:

Spokesman Ray Kozakewicz said the company does not expect to change its publication schedule for the newspaper, though he would not detail whether some sections would stop publishing or how the composition of the newspaper might change due to the downsizing.

Deggans has Media General’s news release as well. || Earlier: Tension over impending layoffs sends rumors flying at Tampa Tribune, WFLA-Ch. 8 (St. Petersburg Times) | Media General reports profits in all markets but Florida (Poynter.org) || Disclosure: Media General’s Tampa properties compete with the Poynter-owned St. Petersburg Times.

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