« | »

MoveOn Protests Reporter/Comrades Cuts

Dropping all pretense, the Soros hirelings at MoveOn.org are up in arms over the downsizing of their comrades in the press.

From the terrorist enablers at Reuters:

MoveOn’s puppet master, George Soros

Newsroom layoffs stifle journalism-lobbying group
Wed Dec 7, 2005 8:11 PM ET

By Dan Wilchins

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Political lobbying group MoveOn, best known for efforts to unseat U.S. President George W. Bush in the 2004 election, protested job cuts in American newsrooms on Wednesday, saying it would stifle good journalism.

At a media conference in New York, the group delivered a petition with 45,000 signatures to executives of newspaper publisher Tribune Co., objecting to the company’s layoffs of more than 800 newspaper workers, which will likely include reporters.

Tribune Co.’s papers include the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times.

"We’re concerned about the ability of newspapers to report news. Good watchdog journalism costs money, but it’s what communities rely on newspapers for," Noah Winer [sic], media action director at MoveOn, told Reuters.

In an e-mailed statement, Tribune Co. said, "The media industry is changing and we need to change with it. … Rather than focus on staff reductions, we would encourage you to focus on the full extent of our commitment to serve our communities exceptionally well."

U.S. newspaper circulation has been in decline since 1984, according to the Newspaper Association of America, hurt by competition with the Internet and cable TV news and rising distrust of a media dogged by reporting scandals in recent years.

Tribune Co. is just one of a raft of companies to announce newsroom layoffs. In September, The New York Times said it was laying off about 80 reporters, while Knight Ridder’s two Philadelphia newspapers, the Inquirer and Daily News, said they would cut 16 percent of their newsroom staff through buyouts or layoffs.

Newspaper employment has broadly been declining since 1990. Since 2001, the number of newspaper reporter jobs has fallen 4 percent to 54,134, according to the American Society of Newspaper Editors.

Josh Douglass, a lifelong reader of Tribune Co.’s Newsday, said layoffs at the Long Island, New York-based newspaper could prevent political scandals from coming to light.

"If there are no reporters there to get friendly with people and find out what might be going on behind closed doors, that’s a real problem," Douglass said.

Most major U.S. newspapers are owned by publicly traded companies that produce profits for shareholders. Newspaper publishers’ shares have fallen this year and increasing use of the Internet as a source of information raises uncertainty about newspapers’ future earnings, said John Morton, president of Morton Research Inc. in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Tribune Co. reported a 19 percent rise in operating profits for the first nine months of the year, but that has not been enough to boost its share price.

Weak share prices pressured Knight Ridder, the second largest newspaper publisher in the United States, to say last month it was considering selling itself.

It’s just not fair.

How can the radical left in this country overthrow our elected government if those corporate meanies insist on cutting back on the shock troops?

Behold MoveOn’s own proclamation (warning, link is a PDF file):

MoveOn Media Action

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

Readers Confront Tribune Execs. Over Newspaper Cutbacks

Tribune CEO Refuses to Meet With Readers Or Accept Petitions Signed By 45,000
Over 650 Jobs Cut Despite $595.9 Million Profit For Company’s Publishing Division

MoveOn media Action confronted Dennis FitzSimmons, CEO of the Tribune Company, one of the nation’s largest newspapers chains, at a conference in New York City attended by top executives of media outlets and media beat reporters.

Noah Winer [ sic], Media Action Director for MoveOn.org Civic Action and spokesman for the 3.4 million member organization, opened with a statement calling on the Tribune Co. to reverse its decision to cut 650 jobs at papers including the LA Times, Chicago Tribune, Newsday, and Orlando Sentinel, and then attempted to present petitions carrying 45,000 reader signatures to Mr. FitzSimmons. The CEO refused to accept the petitions and responded to Winer that he would not meet with readers about his decision.

The action was organized by MoveOn.org Civic Action, whose members believe such cutbacks would weaken journalists’ ability to perform their public watchdog responsibilities.

“Over 650 staff positions were cut at these papers this year, despite a $595.9 million profit at the Tribune Company’s publishing division through September – a $93.6 million increase from the same time last year,” said Adam Green, Civic Communications Director for MoveOn.org Civic Action.

In the last week, MoveOn Media Action launched local petition drives in eight Tribune Company readership areas: Newsday, Los Angeles Times, Orlando Sentinel, Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun, Hartford Courant, Daily Press (VA) and Morning Call (PA).

“These staff cuts mean watered-down coverage of local, state, and national news,” said Winer. “Politicians and corporations who should be held accountable by vigilant watchdog journalism will instead be covered by a staff that is stretched too thin.”

Online petitions are the first step in a consistent campaign aimed at the Tribune Company, and potentially other corporate media owners. Other actions may include person-to-person petition drives in local communities, local petition deliveries, phone calls to the Tribune Company, and actions aimed at influencing stockholders.

“Our big goal is to raise public awareness of this issue and give regular people a way to fight for good journalism,” said Green. “Today’s action is merely the opening salvo of a growing public backlash corporate media owners will face if they continue to abandon quality journalism.”

MoveOn Media Action is a new project of MoveOn.org Civic Action – a 501(c)(4) distinct from MoveOn.org’s political action committee. MoveOn Media Action empowers regular people to reform the media and fight back when news organizations abandon their duty to practice strong watchdog journalism. It was formed because MoveOn.org members felt this was an important priority for the organiz ation.

The jackals howl (or whine), but the caravan (and the real world) moves on.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, December 7th, 2005. Comments are currently closed.

14 Responses to “MoveOn Protests Reporter/Comrades Cuts”

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.


« Front Page | To Top
« | »