Layoffs continued Thursday at Gannett newspapers, which recently merged with GateHouse to form the nation’s largest newspaper chain.
At publication time, a spreadsheet tracking the layoffs listed 17 newspapers affected, with 29 total newsroom personnel laid off. Forty additional people were eliminated from pressroom positions at the Springfield (Missouri) News-Leader, which recently announced it was shutting down its press operations and printing instead in Columbia, Missouri.
The action had been forecast by several, including Gannett itself.
In an earnings call Thursday morning, the company posted a large loss for the fourth quarter, with revenues at the combined company down about 10% and print advertising down 18.4% compared to the same period a year ago. Its stock price has been hammered, down to about $5 a share, losing 20% of its value just in the last week.
Andrew Pantazi, president and co-chair of the news guild at the Jacksonville (Florida) Times-Union, has been tracking Gannett layoffs over the past several months. He tweeted about the layoffs and created the Google spreadsheet to track them.
Once again, Gannett has shown it doesn’t care about the role journalists play in democracy. Today, across the country, the company is laying off hard-working journalists critical to their communities. I’m tracking the layoffs here:https://t.co/IAYq3NbieAhttps://t.co/jb4qRMERFa
— Andrew Pantazi 🐘 (@apantazi) February 27, 2020
The Gannett-owned Burlington (Vermont) Free Press announced Thursday afternoon that it, too, would move its printing and production operation — this one to Portsmouth, New Hampshire — in an announcement similar to the News-Leader’s.
This story will be updated.
Barbara Allen is the managing editor of poynter.org. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @barbara_allen_