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HARD TIMES IN LONDON: In just one sign of the economic downturn hitting media in the U.K., the Time Inc. restructuring unveiled last month is reaching the already significantly reduced international staff, many of whom are based in London and are considered local hires. Employees there received a memo Wednesday with specific guidelines, department by department, for cutting 17 of 26 editorial employees, with lighter cuts expected on the business side. Under British labor law, a 30-day consultation process has to take place before anyone is laid off, so Time International editor Michael Elliott is expected to fly out to London to discuss how to administer the layoffs with employees. A spokesman for the magazine in New York confirmed the process, but said numbers or names of employees could not be discussed for legal reasons.
New York hires working abroad can immediately be cut, so several editors and two bureau chiefs have been let go, including Jerusalem bureau chief Tim McGirk, who broke the story of the Haditha massacre. The spokesman declined to discuss Time’s plans for future international coverage.
Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for IPC Media, a division of Time Warner Inc. that publishes titles including U.K. Marie Claire, Wallpaper and U.K. In Style, said the company is planning “a small number of redundancies” across various aspects of the business.
The Dublin-based Independent News & Media plc this week revealed 90 job cuts at British newspapers The Independent and The Independent on Sunday, and magazine publishers Emap and IPC Media are both planning a small round of layoffs, too.
Emap, the B2B publisher and owner of Drapers, Retail Week and WGSN, has made 40 editorial job cuts in its magazine division.
On an upbeat note, Wallpaper has increased to 12 annual issues from 11, while a spokeswoman at Condé Nast U.K., which publishes local editions of Vogue, Glamour and GQ, among others, said there are currently no plans to downsize.
A spokeswoman for Bauer Media, which publishes Grazia and Pop magazine, said the company has “no announcements to make” regarding possible redundancies, while a spokeswoman for The National Magazine Company, a U.K. subsidiary of Hearst, also declined to comment on any plans for job cuts.
— Nina Jones and I.C.