by Max Brantley
More on the continuing saga of job loss in the media world. The Stephens Media layoffs,which began with news of payroll cutbacks at the company's Las Vegas newspaper, include Arkansas jobs.
Jason Wiest, who's been covering business for the Arkansas News Bureau in Little Rock, got the word of his layoff this week. He said he got a severance package. “I didn’t see it coming for me, but I’ve been writing about the economy and layoffs for awhile, so I can’t say it was a total shock.” Wiest said at least one other person in the Little Rock office, which includes the bureau and employees of other publications, had been let go. The Stephens Media Washington bureau, which had employed four three people, now has one staffer. No word yet on other Stephens papers in Arkansas.
UPDATE: The reduction of the Washington bureau from 3 to 1 includes the layoff of an Arkansas reporter who'd moved to Washington, Aaron Sadler. The bureau office will be closed and the remaining bureau employee will work from home. Stephens Media cuts also include reductions in Honolulu and Carson City, Nevada.
Word continues that cuts are expected at Arkansas newspapers (one reader puts the total in ad, circulation and news at 16 at Fort Smith), but local publishers referred questions to media headquarters in Las Vegas.