Tuesday | Sept. 30 | Got news, or a question?

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38 Responses to “Tuesday | Sept. 30 | Got news, or a question?”

  1. Jim Hopkins Says:

    Be the first in your neighborhood to leave a comment!

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Found this a couple of days late. Think this will be of interest to some, especially at Gannett?
    This is beginning excerpt from article at http://www.telegram.com/article/20080926/NEWS/809260319
    Sure would put a crimp in some of Gannett's paper's style!

    Friday, September 26, 2008
    State Appeals Court rules T&G carrier as employee

    By Jacqueline Reis TELEGRAM & GAZETTE STAFF
    jreis@telegram.com

    Allowing a newspaper carrier to decide whether to wrap newspapers in plastic or rubber bands when a company dictates nearly every other aspect of their job is not enough leeway to make someone an independent contractor, the state Appeals Court ruled yesterday.
    In a case that could change the status of news carriers, a three-judge panel decided that Thomas G. Driscoll Jr., a former Telegram & Gazette newspaper carrier, was entitled to unemployment benefits.

    “WT&G exercised a sufficient degree of control over Driscoll’s performance such that he should be considered an employee,” Associate Justice Ariane D. Vuono wrote on behalf of the panel. She cited state law that says someone is an employee unless their services are performed “free from control or direction of the employing enterprise,” “outside of the usual course of business, or outside of all the places of business, of the enterprise” or “as part of an independently established trade, occupation, profession, or business of the worker.”

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Does Gannett now contribute anything to our 401k after 5%?

    Also, do any other online moderators have issues about over-the-top partisan talking points on stories such as the debate and the bailout? There’s a point where the Obama-MuslimDad-terroristAyers-9/11 conflate to just plain anti-Muslim racism and, frankly, malicious libel (Obama-9/11), IMHO. And the name-calling on both sides, jeeze …

  4. Dutch619m Says:

    On the matter of the carriers, here is how the Courier-Journal thinks of theirs.
    http://www.shameongannett.com/page0049.htm

  5. Anonymous Says:

    To comment on this reply from yesterday…

    “stop contributing to 401k to spite Gannett”…..unbelieveable idiots!”

    The 401K that “we” once had was a cash match… Then Gannett took over. I’ve seen their stock plummet along with everything else. Gannett has shown “us” what kind of future they have in store by freezing pensions. Told “us” that the smart thing to do is invest in company stock (sorry, that would be the smart thing for Company exec’s if “we” invested in company stock to ensure fat, golden parachutes.) I’m looking at a company that is imploding (what are you seeing?) Are there other ways to invest your hard earned money? You bet… Do it now!

    Sign me (tongue-in-cheek)…
    “The Idiot”

  6. Anonymous Says:

    You are under no obligation to keep that horrible company stock. Gannett makes no representations that it’s a good investment. You should be moving it out every couple months or even every paycheck.

  7. Anonymous Says:

    I am so appalled at our congress; they act like little grade school children. How dare they walk out yesterday without coming to a resolution on this bailout bill. It’s all a political game to them. What they forget to realize that it’s not each other they are hurting, it’s us!!!

    I for one am so sick of all them and their childish behaviors that come November I’m voting all of them out of office. Yes, I say we fire them all and take back our country!

    Last time I checked they were suppose to be working for us, not the other way around. Maybe once they join the rest of the unemployed struggling Americans, then maybe they’ll get it. Idiots!

  8. Anonymous Says:

    More idiots? There were more Dems voting against this bill than Reps… So whom shall we fire?

    I feel your frustration, though. My question is, how can a company (or sector of our economy) be allowed to become so large that when it fails it drags us all down? We, the taxpayer, once again is whom they turn to… Disgusting!

    Seems like we’re taking it in the shorts from all angles lately.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    IF you’re smart about how you move out of your Gannett stock, or any fund for that matter, you can make money.

  10. Anonymous Says:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26941860/

    Fed takes fresh steps to battle credit crisis.

    So, the Federal Reserve is pumping billions into the banking market, and there will be another congressional vote to pump in even MORE later this week on the backs of the taxpayers?

    I can see the Financial Institution COE’s now… drunk on the smell of the ink they’ll write themselves bigger bonuses with.

  11. Anonymous Says:

    Convert the Gannett stock every other week. That’s money THEY give to you to match your contribution. If you don’t take it, you’re an idiot. Don’t keep it; convert it into another mutual fund. I upped my ante to 30% 401K contribution as well as contributing to ROTHs outside the company…right now is a good time for investing — everything thing is on sale. I buy ZERO Gannett stock…

  12. mr. whig Says:

    I wish to congratulate shameongannett.com this morning for having the worst-looking website on the entire Internet.

    It is worse than partytentcity.com, and that is saying a lot.

    We’re also eagerly awaiting the next update. Much has changed since the last update in 2005.

  13. Anonymous Says:

    IMHO……I think the entire bailout plan is the worst use for all that money.

    What the govt should do is first…boost the amounts that are covered under the FDIC and also expand the types of investments covered by the FDIC….second….keep their nose out of the financial markets. If in institution so weak, let them either fail and declare bankruptcy or be bought out by another institution..

    By expanding FDIC coverage, that will ensure that money lost will go back to the investors, not the corporations. Then those investors can pump the money back into the markets where they see fit.

    The only other plan I would accept is to divide that 700 billion dollars amongst every taxpayer that files a tax return this year and retired people. Can you imagine what would happen to the economy if people had that much money to spend.

  14. Anonymous Says:

    Yes Dutch619m, typical corporate wordsmithing. I have always been amazed at how “they” can take a sentence or two and twist it into whatever they wanted it to mean at the time, regardless of reality. Any supervisors, DM’s, etc. who actually fight for carriers usually don’t stick around long. 2 thngs carriers ask for…get out early enough to sell the max and give me a complete, untorn/wrinkled paper. At most gannett papers, they are the 2 most hardest jobs to perform.
    Nice link.

  15. Anonymous Says:

    12:07pm
    Playing devils advocate…
    I dont understand how it can be profitable for the govt if it is not profitable enough to keep these companies in business.

    People over extended themselves on their expensive houses and now cannot afford their mortgage payments, this is not going to change.

    The gov will just be buying 700 billion of bad debt. This plan goes against every free market principle and sets a dangerous precedent. What nexts, bailout of the catholic church when they run out of money?

  16. Anonymous Says:

    ShameonGannett.com has been around a long time. It was mainly centered around blue-collar jobs that Gannett was taking apart, piece by piece, newspaper by newspaper. This is how Gannett has been such a profitable company for so long. So before you buy their stock, understand just how Gannett has made a lot of their money; Off the backs of blue-collar workers. Now, Gannett is dismantling most white-collar jobs… See a pattern? Gannett is squeezing the turnip for every penny, then will discard the withered hull and you along with it. CEO gets the prize parachute.

  17. Anonymous Says:

    Speaking of blue collar, any word on what happened to the 120 APP drivers. Sept. 28 was deadline for them to either leave or become indie contractors. Any word on how many left compared to how many opted to become indie contractors?
    Anyone?

  18. Dutch619m Says:

    shameongannett.com was never meant to be pretty. We put it together to show the ugly side of corporate arrogance and greed. It was concieved while the Louisville pressroom was in the middle of a four year fight for a decent contract. Which we gotin May of “04.The pressroom and engravers got 6 (six) 3% raises over five years, older guys got a great buyout, vacations were made better, and language was tightened up. What’d you get?
    And you are right, no updates in a while, but I’m not going to let the domain go, you never know when it will come in handy.
    Thanks for constructive criticism, you will be happy to know that I have enrolled in a web design class for future use. This is one old hound that can learn new tricks.
    By the way, the e-mail that went out announcing Mike Przyblek’s “retirement” went out 15 minutes after security escorted him out the building.
    In Solidarity,
    Dutch

  19. Anonymous Says:

    September 30, 2008

    Star-Gazette publisher Trammer to retire

    Monte I. Trammer, president and publisher of both the Star-Gazette in Elmira since 1999 and the Ithaca Journal since 2007, is retiring from both positions effective Saturday.

    Trammer, whose journalism career spans 39 years, made the announcement to the managers of both newspapers today. He will be succeeded by Sherman M. Bodner, who has been top executive of Central New York Newspapers — which includes the Star-Gazette, Ithaca Journal and Press & Sun-Bulletin of Binghamton — since 2006.

    http://www.stargazette.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080930/UPDATE/309300014/1192/update

  20. rmichem Says:

    To “ShameonGannett.com” I am surprise! I did not know anything about your web site until now. One question, are you connected with the group that contacted and gave me info from your investigators about GCI? If you are. Do not answer me here. You know how to get in touch.

  21. Anonymous Says:

    Trammer is just 57. Questions are: Is this voluntary? Will this be the trend, allowing publishers to retire versus getting canned? Just seems to me there is more to this story. Anyone have the inside track here?

  22. Anonymous Says:

    Voluntary is a subjective term…

    (constructive discharge, is where an employee resigns because of their employer’s behavior.)

    It’s hell to fight in court, but sometimes it’s the last resort of a targeted employee to remain sane.

  23. Anonymous Says:

    I’ve got the answer! The federal government can bail out GCI. We’re “too big to fail” because we have so many crappy papers in so many markets. Congress can give us $10 trillion to pay our fat cat print salaries, and we’ll spend the next 200 years posting updates about our pets, our moms and our weddings.

  24. Anonymous Says:

    Tell me why the tax abatement and the other benefits Gannett might get for the Indy Shared Services Centers isn’t perceived as just a tad bit bailoutish?

  25. Anonymous Says:

    I started with Gannett in 1987 and in 1988 the publisher “retired” wink – wink. I know of at least 5 Gannett publishers who retired like that. These are people I actually know – who told me it was a retire/resign or we fire you — and here are some benefits to make you go away. There are many more I suspect… All corporations do this with top executives.

  26. Anonymous Says:

    Since so many posts today have a business theme, I’d like to offer these thoughts.

    Gannett’s modus operandi has never been centered on the traditional capitalist technique of creating value by delivering superior products. Their whole reason for being is the extraction of spectacular profits from enterprises that had once been merely very profitable via cost-cutting. In this sense, Gannett has more in common with the corporate raiders and private equity firms that get so much attention today than they do with the nuts-and-bolts work of traditional capitalists.

    The Gannett chain was built (I’m going way back now) by acquiring media properties from (mostly) well-heeled family owners who’d become as rich as they needed to be or thought they could be within their hometown markets, genteel folk or people who at least imagined themselves to be genteel who were more or less members of the landed gentry within their hometowns and for whom the prestige of being local media moguls outweighed the incremental gains in wealth they’d have gained by doing the “unthinkable” to their newspapers. Gannett, of course, has no such compunction. There is nothing unthinkable for corporations. People have compunctions; corporations do not. They bought them and squeezed them for the spectacular profits that their corporate bean counters knew would be there if they did to those media properties what the multi-generational family owners would never have wanted to do. You saw a bigger version of this play out on the national stage recently with Murdoch’s acquisition of Dow Jones, and currently with the sharks who’ve been circling the New York Times for several years.

    This business model made Gannett and it’s stock a Wall Street darling for years in the 80s and 90s because it was very profitable. Wall Street worships growth above all else. It is a sort of discounting mechanism. This quarter’s profit estimate is already baked into the stock price. What are you gonna do for us next quarter?

    I know there are smart and experienced people here who know all this already but I bring it up in the context of the flagging Gannett stock price and the current manic-depressive stock market. Gannett stock price will flex with market trends as Jim has noted with a recent blog but the problems besetting the company and the industry are secular. Having accustomed the we-want-ever-more-profits people on Wall Street to jaw-dropping gains for 20 years it is unlikely that Gannett stock will ever again attain the levels it once did, even when the economy turns, as it inevitably will. Because people buy stocks to gain equity, since only those with equity are entitled to a share of the profits, and equity only makes sense where there’s profit growth. Without growth, you lose money to inflation every year except for dividends, which invariably have to be cut when profits stop growing.

    So the people here who recommend getting out of the discounted or free Gannett stock you get or are forced to buy as part of a retirement plan are giving very good advice. I feel some sympathy for the many fine journalists within Gannett (and yes, there are many) who may have big chunks of their retirement in Gannett stock. While Gannett will have future quarters of earnings growth some day, it will only be because the numbers have come down to where they can handle them. The true growth story of the 80s and 90s here is over.

    Companies grow because they create VALUE for customers, and Gannett has never been about creating value for customers. Gannett is about creating value for SHAREHOLDERS (not customers) by cutting costs. You can only do it so much and for so long.

    Disclosure: I play the market quite a bit but own no Gannett stock or any other newspaper stock. You shouldn’t either if you can help it.

  27. Anonymous Says:

    I hope everyone reads the prior comment. It is probably the BEST POST I have ever read on this site.

    Well put, fellow trader!

  28. Anonymous Says:

    OK so should I sell whatever GCI stock I currently own or wait til it comes up a bit? I’ve done nothing with it so far because I fugured it can’t go any lower and I might as well wait it out until it comes back up. Please advise.

  29. Anonymous Says:

    Great post, 5:28 PM

  30. Anonymous Says:

    9:46

    I say we fire them all, both democrats and republicans and start with a clean slate. I’m sure they all contributed and have benefited in some way in all this mess.

    I would also add that perhaps our fine government needs to be following the same legislation they passed on July 30, 2002 known as Sarbanes-Oxley. The whole reason for this legislation was to prevent investors from fraud due to corporate and accounting scandals.

    Or was this the “Do as I say and not as I do legislation.”

  31. Anonymous Says:

    Jim:

    Any idea how secure Publishers are given the recent reduction of 100+ directors a couple weeks ago? Have you seen a trend or pattern of consolidation yet in the Publisher ranks?

  32. Anonymous Says:

    Anyone else hearing the groans about September’s advertising revenues? No improvement from the summer doldrums, I hear from someone who says she knows.

  33. Anonymous Says:

    I hear as well they are just as bad as previous months. I would expect they could only get worse as economic fears cause advertisers to pull back even more. Which will then only give Gannett a ‘reason’ for continued layoffs. Am still waiting on more news from previous posts on 5-7K in Oct/Nov. Would help in making a decision on just when to jump.

  34. Anonymous Says:

    9:46AM: “More idiots? There were more Dems voting against this bill than Reps… So whom shall we fire?”

    Patently false.

    Roll calls were:

    DEM: 140 Y, 65 N
    REP: 95 Y, 133 N

    http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2008/roll674.xml

  35. Anonymous Says:

    Jim

    What are you hearing about layoffs?

  36. Jim Hopkins Says:

    Nothing concrete on layoffs; just the stead drumbeat of rumors.

  37. Anonymous Says:

    7:22 Sorry you have your numbers backwards. Not that important, except you have the bill passing in your “facts.”

    DEM: 140 Y, 95 N
    REP: 65 Y, 133 N

  38. Anonymous Says:

    dutch –

    sorry, but solidary doesn’t exist any more. it’s every rat for himself these days.

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