City Desk

Shit–My Pay Just Got Cut!

Real-time blogging going on right here. I'm in a conference call with my bosses at Creative Loafing Inc. (CL), which owns us, Washington City Paper, as well as five other alt-weeklies. One purpose of the conference call, according to our corporate No. 2 Kirk MacDonald, is to address our "cost structure."

Actually, that's my cost structure. Starting in April, CL will be cutting executive compensation by five to 15 percent. MacDonald said that he and our CEO, Ben Eason, will take the highest percentage cut–15 percent–and others will get more moderate slices. Those others include publishers, sales execs, and top editors at the publications as well as some other corporate types.

I'll learn more about my pay cut after this conference call. When MacDonald first said that we'd be addressing costs, I shuddered to think we'd have to make another round of layoffs. This approach makes way more sense, despite the stress that it places on the company's most wealthy employees. No depressing discussions with the staff today!

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  • laid off cl staff

    At least you are still employed, you ungrateful whinny bitch. Why don't you quit and try to go somewhere else to make what you do now or even the 15 percent cut.

    Good Luck

  • http://CreativeLoafing laid off cl staff

    If you had not drained the blood ($$$)out of the previous owner to make him put the two papers on the market to sale. Then Mr. Eason wouldn't have purchased two financially failing papers.
    Which has ruined his business model that has been working just fine until now.
    Not to mention all the other people that are out of work in the country from the publishing field.

    Try living on unemployment for a while.
    Happy job hunting ASSHOLE!

  • Mike DeBonis

    "drained the blood"? Uh, have a look at the publicly available bankruptcy filings. WCP is in far better shape than any of the old CL papers.

  • eaton

    LOCS -- You're a pussy, as we used to put it in middle school. Use your name if you've got something to say.
    Eaton (laid off CP staff)

  • A Valdez

    Amen, Eaton. And to you mr LOCLS, oh yeah, CL has a great biz model. Just really awesome product they put out! I think I'm banned from saying more...

    But Erik--LOMG what would you have done if you'd found Cherkis live-blogging a meeting! Owww!

    Valdez (laid off cp staff)

  • Matt S

    Well, perhaps they should have cut "executive" compensation from the start. Then perhaps there would have been less staff cuts.

    I don't remember any of the upper echelon volunteering to take a pay cut to save anybody or the paper. But I guess thinking "alternative" is just a marketing ploy these days.

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  • laid off from CL Tampa

    This should have been the first option before the layoffs back in December.
    It's nice how other people were sacrificed first before the executives making $300-400K a year had to take their salary cut. Thanks CL!

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  • Multiphasic

    I don't get it. Is the City Paper editor a dog, or is he a horse? Or is he some sort of... shudder... horsedog?

  • BeanCounter

    "Well, perhaps they should have cut “executive” compensation from the start. Then perhaps there would have been less [sic] staff cuts."

    Executive compensation is a nit in this process.
    THE problem is that Ben overpaid for the papers he bought AND he borrowed $30M to do the deal.
    It is the interest on the loan that is killing the financials of Creative Loafing. well, no interest now after the bankruptcy.

  • Joshua

    Also laid of City Paper staff here, and if you are blaming Erik, I don't know what to say. The City Paper is in much better shape than the other properties, financially and operationally, and god knows that's not saying much given the Loaf, but still...

    Lay off Wemple. He's done much more with less than could be expected given the shit he has to deal with.

  • Joshua

    Laid OFF, I should say. And forget 15%, Ben should be hocking his socks.

  • still somehow employed

    Not to nitpick (and not at all because i think the executives are doing a stunning job) but to be clear, the highest paid salary at CL was not even $200K. Check the bankruptcy info Steve Fennessy has dutifully been blogging. We're journalists, people, laid-off or otherwise. Let's report the facts.

  • Observer

    From Fennessy: "[CL CEO Ben] Eason's salary was disclosed at $232,176, plus a $50,000 bonus pegged to making loan payments."

    After a 15% cut, the poor guy will have to live on $197,350 a year.

  • still somehow employed

    thank you for the clarification! it was supposed to have said "not even $250K."

  • XOglan

    Весьма возможно. Иногда так случается.

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