Gannett began an extensive round of layoffs at several of their newspapers across the country on Thursday, including four non-newsroom jobs in New Jersey.
Rick Edmonds, a media business analyst for Poynter, estimated that Gannett will layoff about 960 employees between now and February as part of their sale to GateHouse Media.
“It’s not known exactly how many were cut, and the numbers will be hard to track because some open positions simply won’t be filled,” Poynter’s Tom Jones said.
A reporter for the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville tweeted that “Gannett has forced people to sign NDAs in order to get severance, and now the company is telling ‘journalists’ to stop tweeting about layoffs. This is the transparency we can expect from the largest newspaper company in American history.”
New Jersey layoffs included an IT employee at The (Bergen) Record and three advertising sales and marketing jobs at the Asbury Park Press, according to records being circulated by journalists.
The layoffs come three weeks after sale created the largest newspaper chain in the nation, and were made despite push-backs from Gannett CEO Mike Reed about the magnitude of force reductions.
Gannett has already reduced their total number of employees from 27,600 to about 25,000 this year, according to a Los Angeles Times report.
In addition to the Bergen Record and the Asbury Park Press, Gannett owns eight other New Jersey-based daily newspapers: the Daily Journal, Courier-Post, Burlington County Times, Home News Tribune, Courier News, New Jersey Herald, Daily Record and Herald News.