Rally, petitions for 'Times-Picayune' not likely to stave off cuts
Hundreds of people, some wearing shirts emblazoned with The Times-Picayune logo and carrying protest signs, gathered in the parking lot of Rock 'n' Bowl in New Orleans on Monday for a rally in support of the newspaper and its employees. A host of business and civic leaders—including the heads of Ochsner Health System and Entergy New Orleans Inc.—also signed their names to a letter urging Advance Publications Inc., the owner of The Times-Picayune, to rethink its plan to cut publication of the city's only daily newspaper to three days a week. The Times-Picayune reports more than 70 community members and organizations, organized as the Times-Picayune Citizens Group, say their purpose is to "ensure the continuation of the delivery of a high-quality, seven-day-a-week newspaper, with access to the entire community." Meanwhile, a petition titled "Save The Times-Picayune!" on change.org had more than 3,600 signatures as of this morning. But the strong show of support for the newspaper is not likely to change the plan under way, says Ricky Mathews, who will take the reins as publisher of the paper later this year. He says Advance Publications is not interested in selling the paper and believes the new digital focus is the best way to sustain the publication over time. The change will make New Orleans the largest U.S. city without a daily newspaper. Staff cuts have yet to be made but are expected to be announced soon. Read the full story here.
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