Bad vibes are wafting out of 801 Texas, home of the Houston Chronicle.
The Chron underwent a round of layoffs and buyouts back in October, but that might have been only the beginning.
Papers all over the country have been ferociously chopping jobs, and it appears even the relatively healthy Houston economy (hey, we did say relatively) is not immune.
At least one editor has reportedly been bracing underlings to be ready for a new round of cuts, and the word "major" has been tossed about. There's actually no word on just how big, nor on when (except sooner rather than later, with "later" being the end of the year), but it's got everybody at the paper walking even more tentatively on all the eggshells they usually walk on.
Editor Jeff Cohen has this to say: "If I could see the future, Rich, my 401K wouldn't be in stocks. Anyway, did you hear we hired two reporters this week?"
Which is sort of an answer, we guess. But we slept through most of Tea Reading 101 in college.
We'll keep our fingers crossed that the rumors are not true. And, of course there's always the chance it's just idle talk, even though the talk seems to be getting stronger.
But given some of the recent bloodbaths in newsrooms....
-- Richard Connelly