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Glazer's Camera

Buyout Program Radically Changed Times Masthead


After a year of cost-cutting and staff reductions in 2012, Jill Abramson, executive editor of The New York Times, began 2013 by telling her staff that the "paper of record" needed to cut 30 newsroom positions, offering in a round of buyouts for senior editors and reporters.

So far, managing editor John Geddes, assistant managing editor Jim Roberts, sports editor Joe Sexton and culture editor Jon Landman are among the several high-level staff member who have voluntarily accepted the buyouts. Other Times employees who have announced their departures include reporter Jacques Steinberg and reporter Joyce Wadler.

The buyout packages offered included a payment of two weeks' salary per year spent at the paper, which can be a significant bonus for the departing veterans and save millions of dollars in salaries for the newspaper.

Abramson cited sharp advertising revenue declines in recent years as the reason for the staff buyouts and cuts. While she acknowledged that the loss of so many talented, long-serving editors and reporters from the masthead was a terrible blow to the Times, she also said the number of people who accepted the voluntary buyouts helped the paper keep layoffs to a minimum.