Seattle Times Cuts Newsroom as Advertising Falls




The Seattle Times is planning more staffing cuts as Washington state’s largest daily newspaper faces falling advertising revenue – a journalism industry trend that has forced buyouts and layoffs around the country.

“I want to be very honest: The impact of these cuts will be significant,” Executive Editor Don Shelton wrote in an email to Seattle Times editorial staff, obtained by the Puget Sound Business Journal. “This will be a different newsroom next year, and every one of our jobs will change as we reduce staff and move ahead with changing our culture to become more digital, more nimble and more reader focused.”

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The Seattle Times currently has 178 people in the newsroom, making it the largest in the Pacific Northwest, according to Times spokeswoman China E. Levy.

“We don’t have a target number for reductions,” she said, “but are confident it will remain the largest newsroom in the PNW.”

These cuts will be larger than last year’s, Shelton said in his email to employees. The Seattle Times is offering voluntary buyouts. Layoffs are expected to follow.

“Managers around the newsroom are finalizing budgets and looking for other places to trim, but significant staff reductions are necessary,” Shelton said. “As painful as that will be, it is essential to keep the Seattle Times healthy and continue our incredible legacy of strong, independent journalism.”

The cuts are due to a decline in advertising revenue. The Seattle Times’ circulation in 2014 was more than 261,000 on weekdays and nearly 350,000 on Sundays. Newspaper circulations around the country have fallen since then.


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