Submitted by Roldo on Mon, 09/28/2009 - 18:24.

Plain Dealer management people now face the same fate as union editorial staff and reporters – job loses – despite a long-standing promise called the “Newhouse Pledge” of no layoffs.


According to a piece in Poynter web site by Mark Holan the Pledge will go out of business on Feb. 5, 2010.


Nolan reported, “The so-called ‘Newhouse Pledge,’ named after the family that founded and controls the New York-based media company, guaranteed that in most cases, employees would never be laid off. The pledge, which according to a recently filed lawsuit has been in place for at least 25 years, applied to all full-time, non-union employees. Newhouse has a reputation of being an anti-union company, and some believe the pledge was intended partly to discourage employees from organizing.”


Holan adds, “But like hot type and afternoon editions, the pledge has become a relic.”


The PD has had significant job lost in its editorial staff, some 40 percent of the editorial staff, according to some reports.


Many notice that the Plain Dealer has reduced its size and content in recent times.

A publisher at the Newhouse’s Mobile Press-Register has decided to use the pledge as a means to sue Newhouse for his dismissal.


“(Howard) Bronson wants a jury to award damages for breaking the pledge and forcing him into retirement,” Holan writes.


This puts another level of PD editorial staffing in jeopardy by early next year.


A Newhouse family member quoted saying that “the pledge does not apply ‘to the kind of transitional moment in the newspaper industry that is basically struggling to survive.’”


The Newhouse Pledge, therefore, wasn’t really a pledge.


The full story is available here:


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Buggy whips, carriages and steam engines

Since the Industrial Revolution, thousands of products have been obsoleted and gone down the Memory Hole.  In the  electronic age, pixels on monitors will be how we get our news -- until the next new thing comes along.  And all you save the planet types should be thrilled that the newsprint industry will no longer need all that pulpwood.

Granted that the PD was one of the less left-leaning rags in the country, seeing flamers like the NYT, LATimes, SF Chronicle, etc., etc. go Tango Uniform is a bad thing because_________________.  Fill in the blank if you can.

If the mega-corporations hadn't offshored us out of most or our industrial base, these former reporters would have new jobs in under a week.


"Yes, we did produce a near-perfect republic but will they keep it? Or will they, in the enjoyment of plenty, lose the memory of freedom? Material abundance without character is the path to destruction." Thomas Jefferson