Media gloom: Guardian to cut 100 journalists

Media gloom: Guardian to cut 100 journalists


norman lebrecht

March 17, 2016

The newspaper is seeking voluntary redundancies in editorial staff after annual losses of £58.6 million.

It is the last surviving UK newspaper with a core commitment to the arts and intellectual affairs.

Read here and here.



  • Eddie Mars says:

    It would be hard to name even 5 journalists working at the Graun. The rest are shameless neocon shills.

    • Ray Richardson says:

      Just shows your ignorance.

      • Eddie Mars says:

        Just shows your allegiance. The Graun just republishes Pentagon press-releases – with the name of Simon Tisdall, or Polly Parrott, or Timmy Garbage-Trash appended at the top.

        And articles “sponsored” by the Heritage Foundation.

        • Olassus says:

          The Guardian, if that is what you mean, is one of the very best news organizations in the world at the moment.

        • Eliza F says:

          Eddie Mars is absolutely right. The Guardian really is a neo-con rag. It didn’t use to be, so there are obviously still a lot of people who have gone on thinking that it is more or less the same left-wing, artsy paper it once was. If you want evidence, you can see it on a daily basis in (for example) the pro-war stance it takes on just about any issue, its pro-US/anti-Russia stance, its absolutely unquestioning acceptance of almost every “Western” foreign policy position, the absence of any genuine critique of “austerity”, its continuous attacks on, and mockery, of Jeremy Corbyn, the appalling sucking up to Hilary Clinton, its slavish acceptance of every drop of pro-Israeli propaganda, its refusal to consider the links between corporate power and global warming………..and, beyond this, the extensive amount of “news” offered which is actually “sponsored” content. Its “Development News”, for example, is kindly supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation…..

          Of course, the Guardian still tries to pretend it is a bit left-wing, otherwise no-one would actually buy it. So you do still get the odd column from that perspective and you do get some of the old Tories-are-heartless-scum rhetoric. But underneath, it isn’t all that different to the Times or the Telegraph. The paper, incidentally, is no longer a “Trust” – a legal position that gave it just a little bit of independence. It is now a profit-centred company and its executive board is staffed by the usual bankers and money-people – not unionists, campaigner, intellectuals etc.

          The real cost of such a rag is that it acts as a kind of boundary marker: it helps set the limits of what is thinkable or legitimate. We know the Mail is poison and the Telegraph a Tory paper and the Times staffed by Murdoch hacks, but the Guardian tries to give the impression it represents the views of people who care, in a reasonably enlightened way, about the world we live in. The sooner it goes bust, the better.

          • Ray Richardson says:

            “The paper, incidentally, is no longer a “Trust” “.

            You apparantly know something nobody else does. The Guardian itself has never been a trust, but has been governed by the Scott Trust since 1936. In 1998 the trust became The Scott Trust Ltd but still stands to secure the financial and editorial independence of The Guardian in perpetuity as a quality newspaper without party affilliation, remaining faithful to its liberal tradition. The core purpose of The Scott Trust Ltd is enshrined in its constitution and cannot be altered or amended, it is barred from paying dividends and ensures that no individual can ever personally benefit from the arrangements.

        • Ray Richardson says:

          So why did they publish The Snowdon material and refuse to hand it over to the authorities Mr Noall ? Whilst the journalists you mock are widely known and respected, who’s ever heard of Eddie Mars?

          • Eddie Mars says:

            If we’re talking about journalistic standards, you should learn to spell “know-all”.

          • Eliza F says:

            You obviously know something the Guardian itself doesn’t know. In their own press release announcing the change, the paper itself said: “Like all non-charitable TRUSTS, and unlike limited companies, the Scott Trust has a finite lifespan. In light of this, the trustees have decided that pursuance of the core purpose is best served by transferring ownership of the shares they currently hold in GMG to a newly formed, permanent limited company, The Scott Trust Limited.”

            But this question is really peripheral. Whatever the precise legal structures involved, something has clearly gone very wrong at the Guardian. By any standards it is no longer left-wing and no longer challenges the government on any major foreign policy issue. Quite apart from which, the whole standard of the paper – the quality of reasoning, as well as its overall journalistic standards – have plummeted to truly awful depths. It is a good paper for young people in London to tuck under their arms while their are browsing for vinyl records. Otherwise, better used as toilet paper.

          • Ray Richardson says:

            Further to Eliza F’s last reply, her first paragraph is almost word for word what I’d said, that The Scott Trust became The Scott Trust Ltd …. and in 1998 for God’s sake, nothing new. (and with the same objectives preserved)

            She then has the nerve to say “But this question is really peripheral” when it is she who introduced “the question” in her first comment !!!

            The cheap jibe about toilet paper just shows to what depths her arguments have sunk, a load of crap.

          • Eddie Mars says:

            That would be “SnowdEn” and “apparEntly”.

            And you prattle about journalistic standards?


          • Ray Richardson says:

            How Eddiefying.

        • Holly Golightly says:

          For once I agree with Eddie!! “The Guardian” is a rag and if it was an authoritative, investigative news source instead of parroting a particular agenda it would have credibility and readership. Sooner or later the truth will out!!

          • Eliza F says:

            Oh, I see what you mean now, Ray! I missed the distinction. You mean the paper itself, not the Trust which governed it, which you don’t deny is a trust. A rather fine distinction – and not terribly important – but, yes, you are right about that. Anyway, I missed that and thought you were contradicting yourself………..which you weren’t. (You don’t have to strike such a venomous personal tone, by the way. I am not here to hurt feelings etc. We can surely disagree in a more cordial manner.)

            As for it being “peripheral” – yes, perhaps I shouldn’t have mentioned it. It was said in passing, and bears very little weight, argumentatively speaking. (Though quite a few commentators do believe this legal transformation is far more important than the Guardian itself claims.) The real substance of my claim is contained in the writing above that: I mean in the way the Guardian presents news and comments on a daily basis: the obvious pro-US bias, the attacks on Corbyn, the pro-Israeli propaganda, the casual acceptance of Blairite economic thinking etc. I speak as one who has followed these developments with mounting sadness and disappointment – hence the toilet paper comments you didn’t like.

          • Ray Richardson says:

            Eliza, please accept my apologies if you thought my comments venomous, I was beginning to feel a lone voice on here. Perhaps you missed this, on the G’s “Front Page” earlier today, here’s the link :


            Certainly not a casual acceptance of Blairite economics!

          • Eliza F says:

            I have to respond here for some reason, Ray! Thanks for the apology – though it was surely my misreading of your tone.

            You are right – there are still ghosts of the old Guardian here and there. You do find the odd article which challenges the status quo. I am not sure the one you refer to represents much of a fundemental critique – everyone admits the housing market is knackered. What I am referring to is the overwhelming weight of output, the standard, daily narrative which builds over time. Does the Guardian ever really make the case for a different kind of economy? For tax rises etc? There are exceptions to my claim, so I suppose it is a question of judgement. To take Blair, for instance: in general, he is still accorded a tremendous amount of respect and is regularly given space to articulate his views. His crimes in Iraq, for instance, are never really acknowledged in the paper. The Guardian view, like the other papers, is that it was a kind of mistake – a botched effort to do good. This just doesn’t fit with the facts as we know now them, which is that it was a calculated geo-political move to gain control of key resources. (Have you ever read an article in the Guardian that links resource control with British foreign policy? That casts doubt on the basic “humanitarian” pretensions of the officials in charge?) Consider its cartoon treatment of Putin, by comparison. When you consider the million dead in Iraq (Lancet study 2006 – not accepted by the Guardian) and all those in Afghanistan, I would say Blair has got off pretty lightly.

            As for its Blairite position on the economy, this has been made abundantly clear in the raft of articles attacking, mocking, slandering and generally ridiculing Corbyn. Pretty much every major columnist has taken turns to make him out to be an unelectable fool. Why is that? The answer must have something to do with the ideological centre of gravity of the paper, which has shifted sharply to the right over the past twenty years or so.

  • Ross says:

    Too bad the NY Times isn’t cutting their entire classical music staff.

  • pooroperaman says:

    ‘It is the last surviving UK newspaper with a core commitment to the arts and intellectual affairs.’

    Nonsense – The Times does at least as much, and doesn’t saddle its coverage with a ludicrous Corbynite paranoid world-view.

  • John says:

    An embarrassment of a newspaper that focuses unnecessarily on generating pointless controversy with its silly views on social issues. Besides, can one trust a paper that cannot even spell its name with a capital letter?

  • Saxon Broken says:

    Despite what many think, the Guardian has never been “left-wing” but rather “liberal”, which is something different. This is what it remains; the disapproval of Corbyn is consistent with this liberal stance.