The New York Times is going through a major restructuring process. Currently the company is trying to offer many editorial staffers buyouts as well as figure out other ways to trim fat. One of the teams being hit the hardest is the copy editors.
The invisible but necessary group of people who make sure the newspaper’s copy is clean and error-free is being asked to cut its staff down by almost half. In a letter to top editors, which was published by Poynter, the copyediting team called these cuts “dumbfoundingly unrealistic.” (For context, the Times publishes upwards of 200 articles every day.)
Now it looks like the edit team will protest the copy editor cuts by walking out this afternoon.
NYT guild says staffers will walk out at 3pm today to protest plans to lay off copy editors.
— Peter Kafka (@pkafka) June 29, 2017
According to the letter sent yesterday, the copy editors just want to work with the top brass to figure out a feasible number of staff members to make the thankless job actually possible. We reached out to the Times for comment and will update if we hear back.
Update: The New York Times offered us this comment:
“We take employee concerns seriously and support their right to speak their minds. But we also believe increasing the number of reporters is vital to the future of The New York Times. Even with these changes, we will have more editors than any similar news outlet and our editing standards and processes will remain the most robust and rigorous of any news organization.”