Isthmus to Lay People Off?

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Postby gonzoboy » Thu Jul 24, 2008 11:28 am

Sounds like hard times are hitting Isthmus, too.

Dean Robbins, Mark Eisen leaving, and this from Vince:

We, like just about everyone else in our business, have had to take a close look at expenses at a time when revenues have faltered. We’ve instituted a plethora of cost-saving measures across the company, from renegotiating insurance coverage to cutting back on subsidized parking. But more still needs to be done, and we are doing it.

Isthmus has for years carried an outsized editorial cost ratio. The present conditions will not allow us to sustain that, so we must reduce some of our editorial capacity. As a result we will be saying goodbye to a couple of staffers in the coming months.

Anybody now doubt that the Internets is gonna kill serious print journalism as we know it?

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Re: Isthmus to Lay People Off?

Postby swoon_queen » Fri Feb 13, 2009 1:58 pm

I know I'm a little late in the game bringing this up, but (with all due respect to Jessica Steinhoff and her writing, which I've enjoyed) does this strike anyone else as poor form considering that veteran contributor Tom Laskin was laid off? If I recall correctly, his 'beat' was similar to Steinhoff's. I was bummed when he got the axe. Hiring a replacement while couching layoffs in the phrase "cost-saving measures" seems like the ultimate in adding insult to injury.

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Re: Isthmus to Lay People Off?

Postby jjoyce » Fri Feb 13, 2009 2:03 pm

Jessica is a freelancer, whereas Tom was a staff writer. So she wasn't hired as a replacement.

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Re: Isthmus to Lay People Off?

Postby Velvet Coffin » Fri Feb 13, 2009 2:23 pm

Swoon_queen's point is not invalidated by that distinction, Jason. Isthmus readers have lost a long-term, experienced writer we knew and liked. In his place is a fresh young newbie. You know full well you're saving money. Quality comes with a price tag and you guys, like many companies, are making sacrifices.

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Re: Isthmus to Lay People Off?

Postby Thusnelda » Sat Feb 14, 2009 3:04 pm

I agree. The Frequency article was incredibly weak. Nowhere in the article did it mention that a huge reason for its success is the fact that they moved the stage location, at considerable expense. A lot of patrons cited that as a big problem for the club's previous incarnations. Also, despite that great pic on the cover and the tagline "merry band of music fiends", Steinhoff didn't talk to any of the other employees of the club, nor did she describe them, outside of a quote from Sampson saying that their assistant manager is in a promising local band. The single quote from Cathy Dethmers was pretty bland, if complementary, and does nothing to describe the flavor of the club other than to say that Darwin is a good guy.

Did she even go to the club at all? The quotes look like they came straight out of an e-mail.

I know you're cutting back, but freelance doesn't have to mean crap. Demand better, guys.

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