Feb 13, 2009

About that universal copy desk

This may be nothing more than wishful thinking, but there's apparently talk in LANGland about the possibility of two centralized copy desks for the nine-paper chain instead of one. One would be based in West Covina to serve the Inland Division and one would be based further west to handle copy from the Los Angeles Daily News, Torrance Daily Breeze and Long Beach Press-Telegram.

That being said, I'm told LANG management has made clear to employees that they're moving ahead with a plan to create a single copy desk for all of the papers in West Covina.

Why does the speculation matter? Because, as LA Observed reported yesterday, as many as five Daily News copy editors (I'm now told four) have asked for severance rather than commute to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune headquarters every day. That's more than half of the DN's copy desk (by either count).

Would copy editors who take buyouts be able get their jobs back if a bifurcated copy desk plan was adopted? LANG management is trying to build some flexibility into the system. According to the Daily News[room] blog, management agreed to honor requests for severance after a "try out" period in West Covina - although the stated reason is that too few copy editors have agreed to make the move.

The blog also has Jim Janiga, MediaNews Group's head of human resources in California, once again saying no final decision has yet been made to move the Daily News desk to West Covina.

In the midst of all of this, I'm told a LANG-wide redesign is in the works. This would makes sense, since a shared copy desk (one or two) would want a more uniform set of templates to save time putting the papers together. In addition, consolidated copy desks and staff cuts inevitably lead to demands for shared content, which is easier if papers to share a similar design.


Anonymous said...

Haven't we seen this before?

Step one: Some in LANG mentions layoffs or another stupid business decision.

Step two: Jim Janiga says it's not a done deal yet and all early reports are nothing but a rumor.

Step three: The rumors end up being true.

Jim Janiga is a liar. Always has been, always will be.

Anonymous said...

Well said first poster.

This is a big joke played on the good folks who toil there.

As far as a redesign, redesign what? A few pages of news and fewer in the future.

Janiga is a lackey, and will say the party line so he can continue to work there. They have no plan, if they do, it will change tomorrow and the day after forever.

Just curious, how did the l a times produce all those zone sections many years ago without the benefit of todays modern technology and produce them basically in one or two areas. It isn't brain surgery.

This plan was developed over two years ago at lang and continues to evolve as they evolve out of business.

Anonymous said...

more layoffs next week at the daily news...your kidding, layoffs, what layoffs, right janiga?

does janiga layoff ed moss, does ed moss get a brain, does singleton get a heart, does garcia tap her heels together and wish for a natural disaster other than the one she is in...stay tuned for more coming to whats left of your newspaper real soon.

Anonymous said...

the universal desk consolidation IS happening.

Anonymous said...

If you're going to do it, just do it. And ask the people who do it every day how to make it happen -- not the people who sit in the corner offices and have no idea how the work actually happens.

Anonymous said...

If you say "That being said," you are a lacky, an idiot and have your nose so far up Lamberts A-hole it's permanently stuck. That being said, All you idiots who idolize Lambert say that all the time. That being said, Whoever came up with that is dumb.