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Feb-24-2010 12:29printcomments

Oregonian Lays Off 37 Employees

So far we have learned that the layoff list includes Restaurant Editor Karen Brooks, Columnist Margie Boule and A&E Editor Shawn Vitt.

The Oregonian
The Oregonian is Portland, Oregon's daily newspaper

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - The Oregonian newspaper announced the layoffs of 37 employees today. Most of those let go are from the paper's news department, some are names that NW readers will quickly recognize.

The Oregonian also laid off smaller numbers in advertising, circulation and accounting. A story from the Oregonian stated that staff members were notified this morning.

According to their article, "Severance packages were offered. Staffers were informed last year that layoffs were likely this month. The Oregonian, like all newspapers, has endured declining revenues the past few years, the result of the recession and the migration of advertising to the Internet."

The newspaper says after the layoff, the Oregonian Publishing Company will be down to 750 employees. Of those, more than 200 work in the news department.

“These layoffs are a painful but necessary part of our 2010 budget, which was developed to ensure financial stability for The Oregonian now and in the future,” said N. Christian Anderson III, president and publisher of The Oregonian.

So far we have learned that the layoff list includes Restaurant Editor Karen Brooks, Columnist Margie Boule and A&E Editor Shawn Vitt.

Newspapers around the nation and the world are seeing similar trends. Internet news is competing heavily with this historic product. It is sad to see.

Special thanks to the Oregonian and Oregon Media Central for information in this report.

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ALH February 28, 2010 4:19 pm (Pacific time)

Too bad they didn't let Anna Griffin go instead of Boule.Anna is boring and dry while Margie is helpful to many. She will be missed

Anonymous February 24, 2010 6:27 pm (Pacific time)

Margie Boule' is top rate, and though she is now in her early 60's and maybe thinking of retirement, she can get on board with other publications in the area. Anyone remember her and my ol'golfing buddy Paul Linnman on PM magazine a gazillion years ago? It's interesting to see that what was once considered mainstream news organizations have been fading while outfits like the FOX Network are now mainstream. One may not like that switch, but it is happening. I would not be surprised if the Newhouse newspaper chain starts selling off papers like the Oregonian and it gets bought by some group that may want to take it in a new direction. There are some models out there that are working. I recall back in the very early 60's we had both the Oregonian and the Oregon Journal, then a major labor strike took place and the O. Journal eventually closed down. I worked for a brief time at both papers and had to cross the picket line. That strike kept going on and on. Many of the staff from the Oregon Journal were hired pretty quickly by newspapers up and down the valley. It was a different time, and you had some journalists back in those days who kept a professional bearing when reporting straight news.

Editor: Well I think people in news today are as honest as ever, with fact checkers and that sort of thing.  I have read some things from the 1940's passed off as news that were utter fiction.  At any rate,  I enjoyed reading about your time as a journalist in Oregon, I understand there was a great deal of unity in the state back then.  Times certainly are changing fast, I hope newspaper finds a way to continue without eternally cutting positions. 

Hank Ruark February 24, 2010 5:14 pm (Pacific time)

Friend Jimmy: Say not so since daily is as daily does...or dies, these days. BUT strongest, most solid, most community-serving press format has long been the local weekly,serving more community needs more closely for more years than most major dailies. With smaller ambition, and smaller area-to-cover, and closer, more intimate contact with readers, the weeklies in this nation have long ago carved out for themselves a particularly pertinent, useful and even more permanent place than most dailies. Check out logo-heads for most in Oregon and elsewhere and you will find many more than 50 years-there, with leaders showing longevities over a century. Press-via-paper is not about to die, despite all the loud professional-pundit noises made (mine,too,for a while !). Weeklies never forgot that basic commitment to the whole community and what was/is the real needs of the readers AND the business-side which so strongly supports the weekly now for precisely those very- localized reasons,never to be satisfiable via any Internet sourcing. "Big O" has proud, solid, state/regional record and we should be glad to see it still surviving...

jimmy February 24, 2010 1:56 pm (Pacific time)

The Oregonian is a shell of what it used to be. I would suggest that the remaining 750 employees start brushing off their resumes and start looking for where they will be in a couple years. Wake up folks, the printed media is dead. Unless you are packing, there is no reason to buy a paper!

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