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Posts Tagged ‘Erica Smith’

Paper Cuts: 2805+ Layoffs in 2010

Well, this is better news: 2010 marked a significant slowdown in the massacre. The newspaper industry has only lost, according to Erica Smith of Paper Cuts, around 2800 jobs. In 2008 it was nearly 16,000 according to Smith and her nifty Google map skillz. In 2009 it was around 15,000 nationwide.

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Paper Cuts’ Erica Smith is on a Week Long Furlough Today

Paper Cutsericasmith.jpg

Erica Smith is the multimedia producer for the esteemed St. Louis Post-Dispatch, where she also serves as the Foursquare mayor. You know her name because she is the creator and updater of Paper Cuts, a map of layoffs and buyouts at U.S. newspapers. Smith is on furlough today and for the rest of the week.

Yes, the woman who has been keeping a Google Map vigil of the newspaper industry bloodletting for the past three years is now finally a victim (at least a temporary one) of cut backs. According to the deal with her union, she’ll have another week in the fall off and another one next year.

We asked her what she was going to be doing with her down time. “Lucky me,” she tells FBLA. “I get to spend time with family members. Then I’ll need a couple of days off.”

Previously on FBLA:

  • Erica Smith is Miffed at CNN for Misquoting Her Stats
  • FBLA Interview With Paper Cut’s Erica Smith
  • Attention Journalists: The Hemorrhaging of Newspaper Jobs Has Slowed

  • Attention Journalists: The Hemorrhaging of Newspaper Jobs Has Slowed

    Paper Cuts_2010.jpg

    We’re nearly half way through the year and according to the always vigilant Erica Smith we’ve only lost 1,911 newspaper jobs so far. Compare that to 2009 where we lost 14,783 jobs and 2008 where 15,992 jobs were cut. A vast improvement.

    Could these numbers be right? Are we really on the other side of The Purging? We asked Smith if the numbers were up to date. “Maybe there’s no one left to lay off?” She offered.

    Paper Cuts Reports Only 1,031 Layoffs So Far This Year


    We’d like to see a total halt or even a reverse in jobs lost in the newspaper biz, but hey we’ll take a slow down. With an average of only 500 layoffs a month so far this year, it’s slower. In 2008 it was nearly 16,000 according to Erica Smith and her nifty Google map, Paper Cuts. In 2009 it was around 15,000 nationwide.

    So either the economy is getting better or there’s no one left in the newspaper business to layoff.

    Our thanks to Ms. Smith for being obsessive about her project.

    Previously on FBLA:

  • FBLA Interview With Paper Cut’s Erica Smith

  • Erica Smith is Miffed at CNN for Misquoting Her Stats

  • FBLA Checks in with Erica Smith

  • Paper Cuts is Finally on Twitter

    St. Louis journalist, Erica Smith the Newsroom Angel of Death, has been compiling and constantly updating a nifty Google map of all the layoffs in the newspaper biz for the past three years. She calls it fittingly, Paper Cuts. And now she has a Twitter account so you can follow the slaughter with all your new found free time. Here’s the link.

    And just in case you’re curious, the number for this year according to Ms. Smith: 14,777. We still have three weeks but last year’s number was 15,977.

    Well, at least they don’t have to drink alone.

    Previously on FBLA:

  • FBLA Interview With Paper Cut’s Erica Smith

  • Erica Smith is Miffed at CNN for Misquoting Her Stats

  • FBLA Checks in with Erica Smith

  • FBLA Interview With Paper Cut’s Erica Smith

    Erica Smith, staffer at St. Louis Post-Dispatch and creator and keeper of the Google Map titled Paper Cuts documenting jobs lost in the newspaper industry, gave us a couple of seconds of her time in the wake of the announcement by the New York Times they would be laying off around 100 people by the end of the year:

    ES:Is it weird that when I see “FBLA” I still revert to high school and think first of Future Business Leaders of America?

    FBLA: *Laugh*

    ES: I’m a bit behind the times…I haven’t updated the blog in a couple of weeks because of other projects, but the NYT is on there. they just hadn’t made the number public.

    FBLA:We were looking at Paper Cuts and it seems like this year will be the same or close to as 2008 as far as numbers. We’re close to 14,000 this year by October.

    ES:When the year started, I thought it would be worse than 2008 in the long run. But maybe there’s just no one left to layoff. although I’m a little worried about 4th quarter layoffs — there were a lot last year. Mostly Gannett.

    FBLA:You’re right, forgot about that. You’re still employed – do you have survivors guilt yet?

    Read more Reaches Out to Laid Off Journos

    We don’t know if this is comforting or uhm…kind of scary sad that laid off journalists are a big enough demo for a company to reach out to. Eep.

    But we love that the press release mentions our old pal Erica Smith who maintains Paper Cuts and so we have dubbed her “The Newsroom Angel of Death.”

    Here’s the release:

    Recognizing the contributions of journalists to the American way of life,, a remote technology service company that makes owning and maintaining technology pain-free, is offering unemployed members of the media across the U.S. three free months of remote PC service to ensure they can maintain the tools of their trade as they look for new jobs or set up freelance work.

    According to PaperCuts, a journalist-penned website which documents US newspaper job losses and closures, over 10,000 journalism jobs have been lost to either layoff or buyout since the beginning of 2009 alone. And that number is expected to keep growing.

    Read more

    Erica Smith is Miffed at CNN for Misquoting Her Stats

    papercuts22222.jpgJourno, Erica Smith, whom we’ve dubbed The Newsroom Angel of Death for her somber vigil of the death of our national print papers.

    Apparently, her record keeping has gotten pretty popular, we’ve received press releases with her name dropped in. Now CNN is using her stats…mangling them.

    She sent us this email:

    CNN is referencing Paper Cuts, saying “More than 21,000 jobs at 67 newspapers have vaporized” which is so wrong. Only 67 papers? That’s 313 jobs per paper. I gave them more accurate numbers than that. I’ve tried contacting the original reporter; no fix. And now non-CNN people are picking up that number and using it in other stories. (And that’s just lazy research!)

    Yeah, there were almost 16,000 jobs lost just in 2008, according to our crack research team.

    Smith clarifies:

    On March 19, when the reporter [Stephanie Chen] asked, 428 papers had announced layoffs in 2008, and 246 had announced layoffs in 2009. Now, the ’09 number is about 305, and there have been about 1,500 more layoffs. And of course some (but not all) of the same papers that announced layoffs in ’08 are doing the same thing in ’09.

    Previously on FBLA: FBLA Checks in with Erica Smith, Paper Cuts Hits 1000 for the Year…Already, Newspaper Layoffs Hit 6,000 This Year – in March – Mid-March

    Newspaper Layoffs Hit 6,000 This Year – in March – Mid-March

    Our Newsroom Angel of Death, Erica Smith, the saint that keeps tabs on you and all your friends losing their jobs and is kind enough to make a nifty google map of it, has informed us that we’re accelerating the rate of job losses this year.

    She writes FBLA:

    More not-so-great news. On Saturday I added the 6,000th layoff to Paper Cuts. And then another 43. It’s only March. Kinda interesting to my morbid mind, 428 newspapers announced layoffs in 2008. In just three months, 260 papers have announced layoffs in 2009. And some of those papers are already on their second or third round.

    Last year on Memorial Day, there had been 3,000 layoffs. That was May. Last year. By November it was over 15,000. Damn.

    Make sure to follow Smith on Twitter…because what else do you have to do?

    The Copy Editor’s Lament: The Layoff Song

    Erica Smith, dubbed the Newsroom Angel of Death for her Google Map “Paper Cuts“. Has sent us this song, “Copy Editor’s Lament” from Christopher Ave.


    “AP Stylebook is my bible, helps me stop the suit for libel. But nothing can ensure my survival now.”

    Listen here.

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