door to the old fresno bee building Our newsroom ‘guild’ votes Tuesday on whether or not they will allow wage cuts for guild members. The proposed wage cuts would be 0-6%, applied progressively based on annual salary. There are a number of other concessions the company is asking for as well. Basically, if we make those concessions, the company will only lay off 16 full time guild employees rather than 21. There are no assurances that the company won’t just lay off more people later anyway. In fact, I think there’s a good possibility it will.

This used to be a great company to work for, then we saw the cost of benefits skyrocket, followed by buyouts, more buyouts, layoffs and a wage freeze, followed by suspension of 401k matching and the pension plan. Now there are more layoffs coming and possibly even wage cuts along with a host of random concessions.

We rode that bubble hard and forgot to diversify, in fact we did just the opposite. Right before the bubble began to burst we doubled down on our bet that newspapers would never fail. We increased our exposure to an already enormous risk at what could be the absolute worst possible time in history. Just as bad, we used debt to finance our added risk. Worst of all, we continue to actively shift blame to the poor economy rather than take responsibility and come up with a plan for success.