Monday, September 22, 2008

Bad moon may be rising again at The Tennessean

If you want to know what is going on at The Tennessean and Gannett Co. Inc., the place to go is

The blog is efficiently and entertaininly run by Jim Hopkins, a former USA Today editor and Gannett employee for two decades. The blog has broken news on Gannett and Tennessean layoffs.

Hopkins' insight is fueled by Gannett employees, who feed him news about their newsrooms and falling morale. A lot of ex-Gannett employees also give him tips. Even though I am a former Gannett-oid, I don't participate in the blog. I don't agree with everything said about the company and its leaders, particularly Craig Moon, publisher of USA Today.

Moon used to be at The Tennessean when I was there. And I found him as publisher to be a man of integrity and the right stuff to turn around the newspaper and the industry as a whole. He had a lot to do with the success of Williamson A.M. He gave me the opportunity to do political writing.

Unfortunately with the downtown newsroom, Moon did not receive the respect of the top editor. And now the newspaper is suffering terribly despite the heroics of the rank-and-file employees.

Moon is publisher of USA Today, and its profitability has not suffered as much as the rest of Gannett properties. Circulation remains strong. I believe those facts to be testament to Moon's good leadership.

Locally, Hopkins' blog reports that something bad as far as employees is going to happen this week at The Tennessean, possibly tomorrow. Here are the comments:

Anonymous said...
Something is definitely up in Nashville. There are a lot of managers walking around with sullen faces.

9/22/2008 1:20 PM

Anonymous said...
Re: Nashville. Of course the managers there have sullen faces: The ones in the newsroom work for Mark Silverman, Gannett corporate's attack chihuahua.

I pray that Hopkins' sources are wrong for my friends and colleagues at The Tennessean. But cutbacks in Gannett have only been about 3 percent of the workforce, compared to two, 10 percent cutbacks at McClatchy newspapers.

Go to Hopkins' blog or stay here at this blog for further updates.

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