News Corp axes over 100 newspapers, 500 jobs on the line

News Corp axes 100 publications. Source: AAP

News Corp will cut over 100 print titles across Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia, with reports suggesting this could amount to 500 job cuts in part of a major shift to online news.

Just 14 print titles will disappear completely, while a further 100 will cease print and make the shift to digital only.

The transition follows a comprehensive review of the publication’s regional and community newspapers, and the ongoing consumer shift to online news, executive chairman Michael Miller said.

“COVID-19 has impacted the sustainability of community and regional publishing,” Miller said.

“Despite the audiences of News Corp’s digital mastheads growing more than 60 per cent as Australians turned to trusted media sources during the peak of the recent COVID-19 lockdowns, print advertising spending which contributes the majority of our revenues, has accelerated its decline.”

Miller said the review found many of the publication’s print mastheads were challenged by both the impact of the pandemic, and tech platforms like Facebook and Google not paying publishers for their content.

“In total we will now publish 92 digital only regional and community mastheads, each offering readers rolling coverage, electronic alerts and newsletters, richer audio and video content and deeper local sport coverage and community debate,” Miller said.

Around 500 jobs are reportedly on the line as a result of the changes, which are set to take place on Monday 29 June.

Which print publications will disappear entirely?

In New South Wales, The Rouse Hill Times will be disappearing entirely, as well as the following Leader titles in Victoria: Manningham, Preston, Diamond Valley, Heidelberg, Sunbury Macedon, Progress and Northcote. 

In Queensland, the Northside Chronicle/Bayside Star, North-West News, South-East Advertiser, Southern Star, Bribie Weekly Quest will go, as will the Messenger Coast Plus in South Australia.

More to come.

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