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Posted at 6:15 PM ET, 12/30/2009

Washington Times cuts journalists, sections

By Washington Post editors

They Tweeted their own demise at the Washington Times Wednesday, a grim irony for a newspaper that came into life 27 years ago as words printed on paper but found its national voice on the Internet.

The Times, well established as a conservative take on Washington, will continue in existence, but the scope of its coverage will be much muted after some sections of the paper were axed and some journalists quit or were fired on Wednesday.

Departing staff members announced and lamented their misfortune on Twitter:

“True story: With the ‘you’re getting fired’ packet, @washtimes was kind of enough to give a PINK sheet of paper with open jobs to apply for.”

The high-ranking among those leaving included managing editor Jeffrey Birnbaum, as well as the managing editor for the print edition, David Jones, and the paper’s political editor, Barbara Slavin.

“Monday begins a new chapter in the history of The Washington Times as a 21st century multimedia company,” President and publisher Jonathan Slevin said in a written statement.

The latest departures came less than a month after the Times announced plans to layoff 40 percent of its staff. At that time, Slevin said coverage would be focused on core strengths, including national security, national and political news, and investigative reporting. The daily circulation of its print edition has been about 85,000 this year, but its reach on the Internet has been far greater.

Reflecting the political inclinations of church leader the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the paper’s right-leaning path appealed to conservatives across the nation. Earlier this year, John Solomon, a former Washington Post reporter, took over as the Times’s top editor, focusing on fairness and banning such practices as putting "gay marriage" in quotes.

Solomon resigned in November just before the cutbacks were announced.

-- Ashley Halsey

By Washington Post editors  | December 30, 2009; 6:15 PM ET
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the banks tell the media what to say - who needs all those reports?

Posted by: ryan_heart | December 30, 2009 6:37 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: iofferkicks257 | December 30, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

And you are next! Trust me if Hiatt keep letting these biased story go unchecked you and yours will join me and mines in the breadline!!!


Posted by: danders5000 | December 30, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Washington needs a second major paper. It's too bad it took Rev. Moon's dirty money to get one. It's too bad that someone can't buy the paper and keep it in operation.

The Post is a better paper because of the competition from the Wash. Times.

Posted by: InTheMiddle | December 30, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

The Times is worthless. It sucks that people are losing their jobs, but that's what happens when your product has zero credibility.

Posted by: ravensfan20008 | December 30, 2009 7:34 PM | Report abuse

The demise of The Washington Times, following the demise of the Washington Star and the Washington Daily News years ago suggests that the Anti-Trust lawyers all over the city need to start looking into the monopolistic practices of The Washington Post. Don't count on it.

Posted by: raym39 | December 30, 2009 7:40 PM | Report abuse

I wanted to send my regards to Mark Zuckerman, who covered the Nationals ably, but their comment engine broke down. The loss of their Sports section is the only loss worth mourning, unless you want to mourn the whole of newspapers as a medium.

The Times was never anything more than a play for mainstream respectability by a man who literally passes himself off as a deity. This, as opposed to Rupert Murdoch, who only wants worldly power. The fact that some reporters did good work before being undermined was a good fringe benefit. In the end, the Times online will be another "news" outlet like Fox.

Get over it, wingnuts. You have plenty of outlets on which you can rage.

Posted by: kevincostello | December 30, 2009 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Faux News will buy out Times and restart it. Then maybe all the rethuglican bozos who keep logging into the WAPO web pages comment section will support their own paper like they never did the Moonie Times. I guess it just shows that the crud the Times was selling just can't reach a marketable threshold, too small a minority opinion.

Posted by: tomniederberger | December 30, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

The end is near for WAPO as well!!!!!! 80% of my neighbors have canceled their subscriptions to WAPO.

Posted by: Jimbo77 | December 30, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

WAPO is doing great. 80% of my neighbors have started new daily subscriptions and love it!!!

Posted by: dlopata | December 30, 2009 8:09 PM | Report abuse

As others have stated, its sad to see hard working men & women loose their jobs.

Nevertheless, ... when your product is the Times, the most partisan paper I've ever seen, its not surprising that the Times does not have an audience.

Its a business decision. If you keep promoting the Glen Beck mentality, sooner or later, you will go out of business. Its not rocket science. Anyone who thinks that the Glenn Beck attitude attracts readers needs to have their head examined.

Is anyone really Surprised that the Times went out of buisness??? To me, the Glenn Beck issue summarizes everything.....

Finally, I think the markets finally worked... Crazy content providers SHOULD go out of business...

Hello McFly??? This is what happens to
organizations (a.k.a. newspapers) who endorse Glenn Beck.

Grow up for a change...America empores you to please, please, And I say PLEASE! Please make a rational decison! There is absolutely nothing rational about Glenn Beck.

Get over it. Move on. And deal.

Posted by: AndrewFischer | December 30, 2009 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Happy New Year WashTimes. Looking forward to the demise of what's left of you by the end of 2010!

Posted by: hairguy01 | December 30, 2009 8:35 PM | Report abuse

80% of my neighbors are doing the "gay marriages" thang, and they use the WaPo for their unspeakable rites involving vodka, firetrucks, and small shaved mammals.

Posted by: lard_lad | December 30, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

me thinks conservative voice works better on TV. Glen Beck in print isnt quite the same.

The Post bleeds money, Kaplan keeps it alive.

Posted by: mikey999 | December 30, 2009 11:27 PM | Report abuse

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