As Gannett, GateHouse merge, newspaper cost-cutting persists

As Gannett, GateHouse merge, newspaper cost-cutting persists
FILE - In this Aug. 5, 2014, file photo, specialist Michael Cacace, foreground right, works at the post that handles Gannett on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Just a week after announcing its $1.4 billion acquisition of Gannett, GateHouse Media is again laying off journalists and other workers at its newspapers, possibly foreshadowing the future awaiting employees of what will become the largest U.S. newspaper company. GateHouse and Gannett say the merger will allow GateHouse to accelerate the “digital transformation” of its newspapers while paying down huge sums GateHouse borrowed in order to fund the acquisition. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Just a week after announcing its $1.4 billion acquisition of Gannett, GateHouse Media was again laying off journalists and other workers at its newspapers. These cuts may foreshadow what awaits employees of what will become the largest U.S. newspaper company.

GateHouse and Gannett say the merger will accelerate its newspapers’ move to digital while paying down huge sums GateHouse borrowed in order to fund the acquisition. But it’s unclear exactly how it will make that happen.

Many in the newsrooms and the communities that depend on those newspapers are mourning the changes wrought by previous GateHouse cuts and bracing for more. Others argue that being part of a larger chain is the only route to survival for smaller papers often still struggling to migrate their publications online.