Five Roll Call reporters received word Wednesday that they now have a new boss. Instead of Editor David Rapp, they’ll now report to a different editor. What’s more: Their work will now be behind a paywall as it appears on CQ.com.
The big switch is part of a plan to realign resources and inject them into the overall digital operation. As sources inside the publication explained to FishbowlDC, the move allows the company to lower Roll Call‘s operating costs while they avoid laying off employees. Hypothetically speaking, insiders explain the shift could help if The Economist Group decides to sell or close Roll Call (athough they have not indicated there is no plan to do either).
Despite the fact that the two newsrooms are now fully integrated, confusion among readers still exists as some Roll Call reporters are still resisting the idea of having CQ invade their Roll Call. But they’ll have to adjust. Stories bylined by these reporters will still appear in the Roll Call print edition. If you’re a CQ.com subscriber, all Roll Call stories appear on CQ.com. In turn, CQ stories pertaining to policy news of the day appear on RollCall.com and the Roll Call print edition.
CQ Roll Call sources tell us tensions are high as some of the affected reporters were less than enthused by the initial news. Some of those called on to make the switch include White House Correspondent Steven Dennis, who is switching bosses but will continue to maintain his regular beat as a CQ Roll Call reporter, House Leadership reporter Daniel Newhauser and Humberto Sanchez, who covers the Senate. Others affected include Adriel Bettelheim, who will write a new CQ Morning Briefing newsletter that starts Monday, Kate Ackley, and Eliza Carney.
CQ Roll Call brass considers the move to be positive. In a memo dispatched to staff Thursday from Susan Benkelman…