The New York Times is “still some time away from final decisions” about making more money online, Executive Editor Bill Keller told staff Thursday, in a staff memo posted by the New York Observer. He said the committee examining the future business model reported to top management this week and “I can say that every promising idea has been given intensive study.”
Keller’s update was part of a memo outlining another wave of cost cutting as the Times continues to shrink its print costs. The latest round of belt-tightening — announced just ahead of Tuesday’s earnings report — cut freelance budgets and newsprint costs in the hopes of saving more staff jobs. The paper is getting rid of sections that handle weekend news for the New York metro area and fashion coverage in the New York Times (NYSE: NYT) Magazine. Keller expects to save “millions of dollars” in annual costs as a result, the paper reported.
Affected sections include Escapes (travel coverage published on Fridays), the Sunday City section, as well as local sections devoted to New Jersey, Long Island, Westchester and Connecticut. Instead, the regional coverage will be bundled into a single local weekend roundup. The New York Times Magazine will eliminate its regular fashion layout; fashion coverage will be limited to the T magazine — which already has been cut in frequency — and the paper’s bi-weekly Styles sections. The company is also trimming its daily story guide from three pages to a single page.
In the memo, Keller said the hope was that the consolidation (along with recent pay and spending cuts) would get it “through the year without the need for other significant reductions.