Dec 20, 2009

A humbled New York Times

The recent layoffs and buyouts at the New York Times have shown the last invulnerable media institution is vulnerable just like the rest. The result is a shock to the system that could bring lasting cultural changes at the paper. From the NYTPicker blog:
It's a far cry from the NYT culture that once gave new hires the confidence that they had been given a job for life. In decades past, a reporter past his prime might be sent to cover New Jersey, or assigned to real estate -- and there they would linger until they were either old or bored enough to retire. Those days are over.


"You can't rest on the fact that you once wrote a great story five years ago," one reporter told us. "Now it's all about what you did six months ago. Three. You're being evaluated constantly, and if you don't measure up, you're gone."
Leaner and meaner isn't always a good thing, but it is reality.

*Update, 12/21: Perhaps sensing the unease, New York Times editor Bill Keller sent out a memo to reassure staff that no further cuts are being planned.

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