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by YES! Weekly staff

Media News & Reports

More Triad furloughs

Theparent company of the Winston-Salem Journal, Media General Inc., isenacting a 10-day unpaid furlough for all employees, to be taken by theend of September. That adds up to two weeks of work without pay, or theloss of one paycheck. The company took more cost-saving measures inJanuary by discontinuing a program of matching contributions to 401(k)plans, and suspending the dividend on its common stock. Inall, these actions will save the company an additional $28 million.Media General has been focused on reducing its massive debt since thebeginning of 2008, when the figure stood at nearly $900 million; downto $750 million by the end of the year. The high debt was encurred byaggressive expansion in TV and web media in recent years, and due toheavy investment in the ailing Florida market. Other mediaconglomerates have imposed similar — albeit shorter — furloughs, suchas 5 day furloughs by Landmark Enterprises and the Gannett Company. — GL

Dot commerce

Nearlyevery newspaper is scurrying to augment its dot-com presence. The goodnews is a general increase in web traffic, according to Nielson Online.At the lead of the pack is the New York Times website, which attracted an average of 19,503,667 unique visitors per month in 2008, a 33-percent increase from 2007. USA Today follows at 10,845,000 monthly uniques, up 12 percent from last year; next, the Washington Post at 10,260,167, up 19 percent from last year; followed by the Los Angeles Times and the Wall Street Journal. In the Triad, the News & Record website, www.news-record.com, attracted 642,015 monthly uniques; and the Winston-Salem Journal website, www.journalnow.com, drew over 405,000 monthly uniques. YES! Weekly’s web presence is small but robust, at an estimated 70,000 monthly uniques. — GL

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