New York Daily News Fires Half Of Its Staff

The New York Daily News announced plans on Monday to cut half of its newsroom as part of a broader restructuring plan at the newspaper, reports NBC News

Among those departing will be editor-in-chief Jim Rich and managing editor Kristen Lee. 

The paper's staff was notified via email from the human resources department which also detailed a new direction for the paper - which will increase focus on breaking news with an emphasis on crime, civil justice and public responsibility. Local news and sports will still be covered, according to the email. 

Daily News Journalists were called to a 9 a.m. meeting and then told to wait for the email notifying them of the cuts. 

The email also notified employees that editor-in-chief Jim Rich and managing editor Kristen Lee were among those parting ways with the company. Rich tweeted early Monday an ominous warning: "If you hate democracy and think local government should operate unchecked and in the dark, then today is a good day for you.

Robert York will be the new editor-in-chief. He was most recently the publisher and editor-in-chief of The Morning Call, a newspaper serving eastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey. -NBC News

The Daily News was bought by media conglomerate Trone last September, adding it to its portfolio of other newspapers and magazines - which include the Chicago Tribune and Baltimore Sun. 

The paper has been one of the most aggressive New York City papers in terms of covering President Trump - with his most recent gaffe or faux pas frequently gracing its cover. 

The layoffs come as local publications across the country are cutting jobs. According to a Pew Research Center report published Monday, over 1/3 of US newspapers laid off staff between January 2017 and April 2018

Between 2014 and 2017, the number of newspaper newsroom employees dropped by 15%, from about 46,000 to about 39,000. There was no significant change in digital-native newsroom employees, however, as the number remained around 11,000 to 13,000 over the same three-year period. Layoffs at digital-native news outlets, in other words, may have been offset by hiring at other outlets, which was not part of this analysis. -Pew


The report also found that while newsroom employees were dropping, 

Those laid off at the Daily News were told on Monday if they lost their jobs, and are receiving 90 days of severance pay. 

"The decisions being announced today reflect the realities of our business and the need to adapt [to] an ever-changing media environment," the email stated. "They are not a reflection on the significant talent that is leaving today. Let there be no doubt: these colleagues are highly valued and will be missed."