While the AP has reached its goal of cutting 10% from the payroll — leaving fearful staffers room to breathe — this does not diminish the overall effects of the layoffs on company well being.
“Morale — which was low before — is completely in the toilet now,” says an editor who left AP during the recent buyout and still maintains contact with former colleagues.
Secrecy has been a long-running characteristic of the current management of the newsroom, says the editor, who’s been in touch with laid-off staffers.
So it’s no surprise that employees were left in the dark regarding job cuts. The editor laments the loss of talent — and lack of faith in management — at “the most important news organisation in the world.” Things used to be more open, says the editor, but “AP has become more top-level than ever before” at the expense of hearing valuable staffers’ thoughts on improving content and moving the company forward.
As for the massive Manhattan newsroom, roughly the size of a football field, “It’s eerie to walk in it — rows and rows and rows of empty desks.”
They are “paying an enormous amount of rent for a newsroom that you could now put in a phone booth — it’s crazy.”
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