At the Sun-Times, "Story" is out.
"Content" is King,
Athenae at First Draft has the story:
Shutterbugs shut out at Sun-Times
The guy whose office is next to mine is the head of our visual sequence, a former news photographer and a pretty laid-back guy. During one particularly tumultuous term, however, he ended up in my office with the door closed, looking like he wanted to stab someone to death.He had just come from a meeting with our chair, in which he attempted to convince the man that visuals needed a bigger place in our curriculum. The conversation turned from patronizing to dismissive, with the denouement being delivered when the chair whipped out his cell phone and said something to the effect of, “Look, I can take pictures with my phone. It’s not a big deal.”We both thought it was a ridiculous statement. Apparently, the Chicago Sun-Times heard it and thought it was inspired.The brain trust at the Sun-Times laid off its entire photography staff on Thursday. The paper issued a statement that was clearly written by someone who got his PR degree out of a Cracker Jack box. The Sun-Times blamed the audience that is “seeking more video content” and noted that “business is changing rapidly.” By the time I got to their need to “evolve with our digitally savvy customers,” I stopped reading because I had officially won my game of “buzzword bullshit bingo.”The paper, of course, is not giving up on visuals, nor is it going back to the days of paying artists to do etchings. Instead, they’ll let reporters with phone cameras do most of the easy work and they’ll hire freelancers to pick up the slack. Where might these professional freelancers come from? Oh, wait… The Sun-Times just created 28 of them by FIRING THE WHOLE PHOTO STAFF....
Having heard this same gabba-gabba dressed up in a hundred different suits since the 1980s, it still surprised me that anyone is still surprised to discover (A) when management becomes enamored of the theory that everyone except people like them are fungible meat bags (funbags!) that (B) everything quickly turns to a puddle of cold sick, which is (C) usually when the same management that converted a once-viable enterprise into a puddle of cold sick decides to spend an enormous pile of cash to hire a clown-car of consultants just like them to tell them that even more underlings will need to be "rightsized" onto the scrap heap.
And they called it the birth of the blues.