If true, this is tough news, because the Mercury News has long been considered the voice of Silicon Valley. Many may disagree. However, the Merc has offered a good cross-section of the valley’s business news, from real estate developments, to stock fraud to financial advice about state tax changes and more. It’s easy for us bloggers to chew off a niche and survive, but who is going to do the heavy duty investigative pieces about local labor exploitation, justice system scams, city corruption and environmental scandals that the Merc has done so well over the years? These are stories areas were advertisers don’t easily congregate.
I left the Merc last year to launch VentureBeat, but the Merc is still a daily read. Grade the News says cuts -– almost one in four of the total — are to be eliminated at the San Jose Mercury News this summer after a layoff moratorium negotiated with the local Newspaper Guild expires.
David Satterfield, managing editor of the Mercury News, refused to discuss staff cuts, but told the publication: “I think it has been a difficult start to the year…That’s the word we keep getting from our advertising department.”
This comes after the SF Chronicle — the other major newspaper in Silicon Valley — announced May 18 that it would trim 100 newsroom jobs from its 400-member staff in coming months.
Newspapers have been losing both subscribers and advertisers to the Internet, and the trend is accelerating.