The Gannett Newspapers chain has a miserly rep in the biz for buying up papers, sending in the bean counters and subjecting staff and management to brutal belt-tightening: freezing wages, killing bonuses and slashing newsroom jobs. This just came in over the transom from something called the Gannett Blog, which appears to be a gathering place for the disgruntled:
I couldn’t make this up if I tried. A reliable Gannett Blog tipster says Corporate sent a human resources representative to the Courier-Post in Cherry Hill, N.J., yesterday after the Big Cheeses in McLean, Va., got a letter describing a serious state of low morale in the newsroom. OK: We all know newsrooms are hothouses of unhappy journalists, so what could possibly have happened to raise such alarm bells?
In an earlier note, my tipster gives the backstory: “Two months back, it was discovered that someone defecated on the floor of the editorial men’s restroom. It went 13 hours before being cleaned up, I might add. 13 hours. The ‘evidence’ was nowhere near any of the toilets, so one of the operations folks designated it an act of vandalism. . . . The event was christened ‘Poopgate.’ Fast forward to today when the same thing happened in the editorial women’s restroom.”