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The Oklahoman can’t even tell the truth in article about its own layoffs…


It looks like one of my educated guesses was on the mark!

In its big company-wide meeting, The Oklahoman announced yesterday it will close its printing facility in Oklahoma City and layoff over 120 employees as it outsources "printing and production operations" to The Tulsa World. Yeah, that's right. The Tulsa World will be printing The Oklahoman.



The Oklahoman will outsource its printing and packaging operations to the Tulsa World beginning in September, announced Chris Reen, publisher of The Oklahoman and President of The Oklahoman Media Company. The Oklahoman will close its printing and packaging facility at Britton and Broadway.

"We're fortunate to have newer and more modern presses as close as Tulsa with ownership like Berkshire Hathaway who has a great deal of experience with these sorts of arrangements around the country. The move will create significant cost savings while not sacrificing quality," Reen said.

"While this move gives us the ability to continue to provide professional print journalism in our community for an extended period of time, it's never easy to make a business decision that adversely affects any of our employees," he added.

Along with other manufacturing changes, a total of 65 full-time and 65 part-time positions will be eliminated. Those impacted will be offered severance pay, subsidized health insurance and outplacement services.

The rest of The Oklahoman article is classic PR mumbo jumbo. It contains empty quotes from Chris Reen, some Tulsa World dude, etc. You can read it here if you want. For some reason, the article doesn't mention the other big thing to come out of the meeting. Check this out...

We've learned through the Ogle Mole Network that The Oklahoman has apparently reached a deal with Gatehouse Media to design and copy edit the newspaper. According to its website, the Austin-based company (Yes, Austin) "publishes 620 community and business publications, including 125 daily newspapers, along with over 520 affiliated websites." As a result of this agreement, The Oklahoman will only employ a handful of page designers and copy editors at its Oklahoma City offices.

You may be wondering why The Oklahoman hid this news as "other manufacturing operations" in the news release. That's probably because Gatehouse Media also owns The Oklahoman's main business news rival, The Journal Record. Let that sink in for a second. The Oklahoman, our state's largest new organization, is now turning to its main competitors to design, produce and print the newspaper. Before you know it, The Oklahoman's going to partner with Tate Publishing and outsource all reporting and news desk jobs to the Philippines.

OK, that may be a bit extreme, but talk about changing times. It's crazy to see how far the mighty has fallen in just 15 years. I bet that sound you just heard was E.K. Gaylord rolling in his grave... and all his old rivals and enemies doing backflips.

Anyway, our condolences go out to all the families affected by this layoff. We know how shitty this can be, and wish them the best of luck in the future job hunt.

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