Rapid-fire changes underway at newspapers sold to cost-slashing hedge fund Alden Global Capital have led to a profound case of the jitters at newsrooms like the New York Daily News.
On Monday, Daily News staffers were hit with the first bout of potentially bad news when they were told via memo that they had been spun off into a separate subsidiary of Tribune Publishing called Daily News Enterprises.
The baffling move, which doesn’t appear to have been replicated at any other Tribune paper, came the same day Alden fired Tribune CEO Terry Jimenez, the lone board member to oppose the Alden takeover.
Concerns were only heightened after Alden Global offered buyouts to non-unionized workers at the Daily News and eight other metro dailies, including the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun and the Hartford Courant.
The Chicago Tribune reported that the new owners had contacted the paper’s representatives at the NewsGuild union to discuss voluntary buyouts for journalists, but then canceled a bargaining session in the wake of its $633 million takeover.
Such moves have especially stirred angst at the News which laid off 98 people, including half of its entire newsroom back in 2018, under