Halifax Media pushes back non-compete deadline

Sarasota Herald-Tribune investigations editor Matthew Doig emails me:

The deadline to sign the [Halifax Media] non-compete has been pushed back to a yet to be determined time so the language can be changed. Too early to tell how much it softens up, but there’s no doubt there will ultimately be some sort of non-compete to sign. And that’s everyone — advertising, news, management, etc. But at least everyone has some more time to consider options.

* Earlier: Halifax Media employees told to sign non-compete by today

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2 comments
  1. Barn Groover said:

    It should by now be clear that the owners of Halifax Media are engaged in jihad against traditional (i.e. liberal) journalism. To acquire an entire division of The New York Times is a wet dream of the far right. Notice that they steered the editorial and news pages of their first acquisition – the Daytona Beach News Journal – immediately rightward. Watchdog journalism was jettisoned and replaced by a relentless pro-business drumbeat. Do you think the same plans are not in place for the newly acquired papers? You will also notice the new company made no effort to communicate to the newsgathering staffs before the acquisitions. While there were no immediate layoffs, there were also no reassurances that Michael Redding and company have any respect whatsoever for their reporting staffs or even the mission of news reporting. That’s because they intend to use their reporters to reward their biggest advertisers and fill pages between the ads – nothing more and nothing less. Their two-year rule at the Daytona paper has been through coercion and intimidation, as foreshadowed in the new employee handbook: You are an at-will employee who can be fired at any time for any reason. Don’t forget it. None of the public statements by Halifax so far convey a respect for or intention to continue the traditions of an independent press. The strategy here, in addition to maximizing ad revenues and strengthening the value of the properties as marketing vehicles, is to eviscerate the power of low-paid and high-minded journalists so they can no longer hinder the agendas of the owners’ political and business cronies.

  2. A guy said:

    Barn, those are some valid concerns, but I’m pretty sure it’s illegal for a company that’s in negotiations to buy a business to contact potential future rank-and-file employees before the sale is complete.