Monday, February 02, 2009


Not me, but I hear that the proverbial 'Pink Slip' is going out over the coming week in a couple of large media groups to quite a few employees in the form of machine generated emails. Angry mails from senior editors are doing the rounds (great way to build up morale) and employees have all been told to buckle up - well, shape up. In several language channels, you know the way that some of them expanded there are hundreds of 'silent' lay-offs.
How bad is the scene? By some estimations between 1500-2000 jobs in the media sector in India have already vanished, but that includes ad-sales and marketing which make up two-thirds of job-losses by conservatiive estimates. And these numbers do not include 'internet' operations of media firms such as Firefly or Times Business Solutions which have been cutting back as well.
This is a small note, if you have been laid off or think your job is under threat because you don't work enough and spend the day reading crap like this, just know your rights if you're asked to go. The economy is down and the PR escape route isn't there anymore and don't think that 'Blogging' is quite an exciting way to make money either because this is a popular blog - I was amazed when I consolidated my feeds into one just to discover I have over 500 subscribers (yes, that is why I put ads onto the feeds) - but money... well, bits and pieces. Sure, it would be possible for me to consolidate and get something going if I wanted to because I have an established base, but then again that won't exactly mint money. I blog because I like the noise my fingers make when the bang on the keyboard. No seriously. I'm addicted to tappity-tap. Well, it is a better addiction than stuffing your nose.
Anyway, the comments and the email line are open if you hear of lay-offs please let me know and please vent if you want to. How was the procedure handled, were your resignation letters on your desk when you arrived, a la (unnamed company) SEZ employees? Or were you told that times are bad, or that you're a worthless gorm? Do you think your media masters are spending large sums of money on 'consultants' or on launching a television channel that is sucking up resources? Tell the world.
In the meantime, the rest of you, get back to work!


Anonymous said...

Hope this isn't too personal a question, but can you tell us how much an Indian blogger with your kind of subscriber base can hope to make through ad revenues?

Anonymous said...

Does Indiatimes firing all 300 plus staff on Indiatimes travel count as media jobs? The travel vertical has effectively been shut down there.

Mohan said...

Talking of pink slips and lay offs, here'a a link you might find interesting:

K said...

Many comments were published other than those that incl my name or Rahm Emmanuel levels of profanity. Plus I understand that Khalid M had a movie and a play for which he got funding and left HT on amicable terms and was not fired. Well, I could be wrong also.

GBO said...

a) Spikka de Inglisi and no de internet explorer brousa, as many jobs as you want at 10k per month, work nights.

b) Senior friend from to be un-named big media house aksud me how i fire people, i said i give them 3 months leave with pay and ask them to find out if their head is on their shoulders or in their a**.

Sorry, bad days ahead, or actually not. Go work upcountry, plenty of jobs, and free housing too.

Anonymous said...

K...wats wrong with you? u hav actually quoted KARL MARX!

Anonymous said...

OK, here goes. Rahul Joshi has already announced layoffs at ET, which will number in a high sub 100figure.Targeted savings: Rs 50 lacs a month,so expect some seniopr and mid level employees to go too.
On a smaller scale, Webchutney studios, which through Goosefish media ventures owns strange sites like,, and bombaybitch, are desperately looking for a buyer for some of their portfolio sites. Failing which, they have a list ready too.

TOI and HT might take their Mumbai mafia to a new level, with TOI selling HT from March 1.Media planners will hate it, and most of HT's media marketing team will be at the wrong end of this tie-up. Does make DNA look good though.

Radio City, the only PE funded radio station is likely to announce layoffs by Month end. They just delayed salaries, and will probably need to knock off some names to keep paying the rest.

Mint continues to suffer it's thousand cuts treatment, with perks and more getting snipped every day.

At least one big Out of Home player is in 'play' now, looking for a buyer. Lack of a suitor will mean a drastic cutback in manpower et al by 70% there in April.

arvind said...

talking of mint which did some discreet firing recently, has some weird posts on its blogs. just chanced upon this - and they say they have a wsj tie up

Anonymous said...

hello, I work in ET. No layoffs are announced yet. It may come - may be as early as this week - but NOTHING yet.

Anonymous said...

Sad but probably true, what's happening to daddy Jugs at TOI, then?

Anonymous said...

Hey, check this out. Enter the words "india media layoffs" into Google and see what results it throws up.

K said...

See Jug has superannuated and BCCL follows this retirement age policy quite strictly. So I doubt there will be much impact there. From what I understand there will be around 40-60 layoffs at ToI and around the same number at ET.

Anonymous said...

Ok guys, here's Khalid's story. KM had an ongoing battle with the Samar.
Without being spiteful (tho sometimes, it is difficult to control emotions), let me piece together the story.
From the time, Samar joined... he was trying to put KM in place. So he got him a deputy editor (Lalitha Iyer), a complete wierdo who would write a column... chick lit or chick shit... about her love for her father (how he could climb trees even that this age) and brother and so on.
But KM survived the trauma. Now that Samar is in Delhi, he played his own card.
On that eventful day, the new editor (K's former boss) came and told KM that he has to take a salary cut and all the copies for Cafe will henceforth be vetted by Samar. No wonder, KM quit that very moment.
Sad, but if HT has to lose KM because of Samar... the media industry is going to the dogs.
Sadly, K's former boss, even mine's at one time is having to do the dirty job. Not good for someone who had a great reputation for man management. Hope you read this Sanjoy!

Anonymous said...

Latest... Latitha Iyer, KM scorned deputy editor... and a wierdo who would write about her father and brother... is back with Cafe. Incidently, when she was being sacked in November because she screwed up big time... KM saved her. She was transferred to gray matter.
Now she is back with a vengeance.