cindy capitani

cindy capitani
Rutherford, New Jersey,
August 11
wordsmith. left the paragraph factory for a private atelier. follow me on Twitter @cindycap

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Editor’s Pick
JULY 2, 2009 10:15AM

Another round of layoffs, another day at the newsroom

Rate: 16 Flag

It’s kind of sad when the start of a quarter signals a memo from corporate. No need for a rumor mill – though it’s there nonetheless – history’s been the indicator, and the numbers don’t lie. And just as Tuesday always follows Wednesday and July follows June, the 3rd quarter triggers a memo of doom.

Nationwide our community newspaper group will lose over 1000 positions, our daily among them. Who will the axe fall on this time? When? All we know is it’ll happen before July 9, and despite the financial necessity, it’s no reflection on us, says corporate; we all rock!

And we do, actually. Each quarter of less staff and lowered morale left behind more work and a forced “rah-rah” attitude that ultimately took hold in a “let’s fake it till we make it.” I witnessed professionals – myself among them -- work out of cardboard boxes in the midst of a move, never blinking an eye. No temper tantrums, no screaming matches, no coffee cups flung. A paper got out each day, we hustled to scoop the competition and waited for the primary and board of education election results.

We interviewed new college grads, shot Memorial Day parades and covered the courts and hot trials. We here, there and everywhere, just as always. No one would ever have known we were smaller in number, a little worried and a tad confused.

More layoffs brought even more work and a computer program from the 1980s and still, we soldiered on with few complaints, stories banged out and awards won as if nothing at all changed. Longer hours and all kinds of new systems in place, some good, some not, and still … business as usual.

We all want our jobs.

And it’s not just because the United States unemployment figure today, July 2, is 9.5% and 467,000 jobs were lost in June. It’s because we know we’ll unlikely find another job in a newsroom, and it’s where we want to be. We’ll take the changes, face the uncertain future, walk the unstable ground and wait for the next memo of doom.

We just want to keep our jobs. And soldier on -- as journalists.

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Must be tough waiting for the axe to fall. Even if it misses you, you have survivor's syndrome. My kids are just beginning to discover newspapers; the elder discovered that--unlike the internet--everything's in one place. I almost said "Duh". The younger started reading when he started hitting home runs and getting his name in the (very) local sports pages. The ego leads, brain follows.

Best of luck.
I know you dodged a bullet earlier in the year. Is your position in the cross hairs again? Hang in there Cindy.
they are lucky to have you
It must be really rough to sit, keep working as if nothing is happening, while waiting for the axe to drop. So many people out of work now, and companies doing major cut backs, adding more work on the ones left there. It is scary out there looking for a job now day, trust me I know. I feel for you and everyone else hurting in these times. {{HUGS}}
Thank you for a wonderfully written post, and Congrats on the EP you deserve it.
Good luck as the days count down.
That hollow, roiling feeling in the pit of your stomach every day isn't conducive to being the best journalist possible. Gawd, when will this let up? Keep the faith, and an active resume.
Singularly amazing that your quality of work production stays so high having to work under these psychological conditions. I feel for you.
Cindy, are you another Gannett employee? I feel your pain, my dear, I feel your pain.
my fingers are crossed for you.
Too much to hope the axe ain't gonna be swung. Only realistic hope is that it doesn't hit you.

Keep yer chin up.
Cindy, if they let you go they are fools. You are a champion for them and press in all its forms - the work ethic, the passion, the smarts. My stomach is in knots for you.
Cindy, talk about a stressful situation . . . to have had the round of layoffs already this year and now it's time for more! I'm sending positive vibes that you will again keep your position at the paper.
This is why I'm self employed, I'm able to control how much and when I get paid. When I take time off (almost never) and when the axe falls it's not on my head.

Good luck and welcome to the ObamaNation
Best of luck to you and your colleagues. I've been there twice in this business, and it's never easy.
Man, that's tough , Cindy. I don't want to alarm you and I'm sure that you already know this, but even if you wanted to change careers, there is no place to go. Even the menial jobs are on the skids. No one is hiring in my area and if they are the line is out the door for applications only. Get an interview? Pffft! As if.
Carry on, Cindy and the best of luck to you.
Hang in there, and good luck.
I'm so sorry Cindy. My thoughts and prayers are with you. You survived the last one... but the next? How scary that must be..
You must be a Gannett employee. I used to be one until I got laid off at the end of the first quarter. It will be interesting to see how things shake out -- the memo says 1,000 jobs; the rumor mill has it pegged at four times that. I know the folks left behind at my paper are working hard and trying to keep it together. I wish you all the best.
Thanks Con. I had the very same thought as your younger when i picked up a news magazine recently and discovered all kinds of things I nornally wouldn't have stumbled upon. I thought "how convenient, all this stuff in one place." Duh indeed!

in the cross hairs sheep. fingers crossed.

thanks bri -- hope they think so too!

Fireeyes, it's tough, but i've almost gotten used to it -- the uncertainty. almost. thankful to have a job -- and hope it stays that way. it's taught me, once again, to take nothing for granted.

thanks very much AtHomePilgrim

Good advice Walter. Don't think it will let up anytime soon. On the flip side, it does keep us sharp. I think....

Thank you Maria. i know you're one who's among those who living life after newspapers ... sucks. and i'm sorry. i wish i knew of of way to harness all of our talent into a digital journalistic cash machine ... and yes, you're right about my place of employ. they used to be known as one of the stronger companies, being the largest in the country and know to be brilliant bean counters. now i've read of their debt woes and it's not pretty.

danka JK. it certainly makes for a bit of paranoia for sure!!

Duane, the journalism work ethic amazes me daily. amazes me. truly. and thank you.

AshKW, yes I am. One whose been lucky to hang on so far. We shall see some next week.