The Seattle Times cuts 10% of workforce

The Seattle Times will cut around 10%, or around 130-150 positions, following a similar cut at the beginning of the year.

In a memo to staff, Seattle Times Publisher Frank Blethen and company President Carolyn Kelly (as published in the Seattle Times) blamed the moves on industry changes and the global economic crisis. Both hinted in the memo that further staff cuts may occur next year: “As the 2009 budgeting process continues, there will be additional expense reductions, which may include additional layoffs.”

While print revenue has declined at the paper in line with the rapid dive reflected in the rest of the industry, the paper reported that growth in online advertising, previously a positive for the paper, has stalled due to the broader economic crisis.

According to the memo, The Seattle Times “saw average weekday circulation decline 7.7 percent to about 199,000, while [JOA partner] the Seattle Post-Intelligencer dropped 7.8 percent to about 118,000. The circulation for the Sunday paper — which bears both the Times and P-I mastheads — fell 9.1 percent to 382,000.”