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November 16, 2009

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Ummm, are you sure that Gannett posted record profits last year? Do you know how to read a balance sheet or income statement?

This year, Gannett executives awarded themselves cash bonuses of $2 million dollars, even as it continued to order 1,514 layoffs (and counting) at newspapers across the country. (source: http://gannettblog.blogspot.com/2009/03/what-happens-when-exec-pay-consultants.html and http://gannettblog.blogspot.com/2009/03/what-happens-when-exec-pay-consultants.html)

According to MarketWatch in an article from last month, Gannett's third-quarter profits were $73.8 million; its stock advanced 8.2& to close at $14.06.

You're right that it is certainly not a "record" profit though, though it IS a profit; it was a mistake to use that word. I'll make the clarification. Thank you!

Thanks for responding and for clarifying. As a former Gannett employee, I think your general critique is correct: This is a big corporation with few ties to the community. But beyond that, it comes down to decisions by local publishers, many of whom are looking forward to their next gig. Look at the former publisher, David Hunke. He essentially climbed through the corporation -- Cincinnati, Rochester, Detroit. For his time at Detroit, where he was publisher from 2005 to earlier this year. He cut coverage and weakened the paper. His penalty? He's now publisher of USA Today, one of the largest circulating newspapers in the U.S. and Gannett's flagship.

Scary news. I hear you about local publishers. It's hard to find people to push back on the trend when, as you say, they are rewarded by the parent corporation with promotions for weakening papers.

You know who I want to see in charge of my local paper? The dynamic trio of Lou Grant, Charlie Hume, and Mrs. Pynchon.

http://www.hulu.com/lou-grant

Sigh.

I am/ was a hawker for the free press do you think you would be interested in doing this. What i do is sell the papers on a corner. I was up to 400 sunday papers until they raised the price. The people i worked for only gave me 200 papers for the last 2 weeks. I quit today 1/31/2010 after 2 years. I want to work and i dont like to be held back .. Paul

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