Much speculation among Ottawa’s chattering classes today as to why Paul Godfrey would request an “urgent” phone meeting with Jim Watson.
News of the summit call between the Postmedia supremo and the Ottawa mayor broke on BuzzFeed earlier in the day, after Godfrey’s confidential email to Watson was accidentally forwarded to Jim Waterson, a UK-based Buzzfeed hack, often mistaken on Twitter for the mayor of Ottawa.
Godfrey is eager to get Watson onside, to assure him that contrary to the rumours around the city, Ottawa won’t be losing either of its newspaper voices, the Citizen or the Ottawa Sun.
You gotta hand it to Godfrey. If he can’t polish a turd, he just rolls it in glitter.
He prefers to call the current Postmedia downsizing as an exercise in “reducing duplication”, which is why the Sun and Citizen were last month cluged together under the same roof in the Petfinder building on Baxter Rd.
In this new world order, all copy is deposited in one large, communal pot and rewritten for either paper. (Big words will be extracted for Sun copy and space will be created to accommodate ads for pick-up trucks.)
As reported in Frank Nov. 7, 2015–and denied at the time by Godfrey–the amalgamation of the Citizen and the Sun will be duplicated in Calgary and Edmonton, where the Herald and the Sun will become one paper in Calgary and the Journal and Edmonton Sun will merge.
In Ottawa, layoffs will begin immediately, mostly on the Sun side of the operation, as Citizen hacks have a collective agreement with Postmedia that runs to Dec. 31, 2018.