The New York Times employees protest job cut; walk out of office

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The media industry has been going through a tough phase, forced to cut down many copy editing jobs due to digital disruptions.

Unhappy with a job cut decision, The New York Times employees reportedly walked out of office to showcase their protest and solidarity. Apparently, the newspaper plans to cut down the number of its copy desk employees to 50 soon.

As per the employees, the company offered buyouts to 109 copy editors, to bring down the number of copy desk staff. To cut jobs, the company has also reportedly interviewed copy editors in an unfamiliar manner where they were asked to justify their continued employment.

These measures adopted by the company have backfired and employees have written an open letter to Dean Baquet, executive editor and Joe Kahn, managing editor, expressing their anger and feelings.

The letter read “You turned your back on us”.

“We abhor your decision to wipe out the copy desk. But as we continue this difficult transition, we ask that you sharply increase the available positions for the 109 copy editors, as well as an unknown number of other staff members who have effectively lost their jobs as a result of your actions,” it added.

In response to the letter by employees, Baquet and Kahn responded through a letter that read, “We are not, as we have said repeatedly, eliminating copy editing. A majority of people currently employed by the copy desk will find new editing jobs.”

According to the employees, the buyout will take place till July 20, after which layoffs are expected. Employees who decide not to take a buyout will have an opportunity to apply for other jobs within the company. Those applying for other jobs will be interviewed, but it isn’t clear how many jobs are available for them.

The media industry has been going through a tough phase, being forced to cut down many of the copy editing jobs due to digital disruptions. While a substantial number of news websites have already cut down the number of editorial staff, many are in the process of doing so.

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