Layoffs Commence -- Yes, Again -- At the Chronicle

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UPDATE: 6:50 -- a newsroom source tells SF Weekly that five editorial department employees have been let go, including some names newshounds will know.

Reporter Meredith May -- who penned the Chron's sex slave series -- has been laid off, as has talented photographer Frederic Larson, and multimedia producer Justin Beck. A pair of editorial assistants also were shown the door, but our sources declined to name them. 

Word from the Chronicle newsroom came SF Weekly's way this afternoon that the paper's "after Labor Day" layoff date is right here, right now.

Newspaper employees were informed less than an hour ago that the paper is, once again, downsizing. A bulletin was sent out by the Newspaper Guild that Chronicle management notified the union that "newsroom layoffs are expected to begin this afternoon."

The number of workers, departments in which they toil, or duration of this round of layoffs was not disclosed to the Guild. Newsroom employees SF Weekly has spoken with are anticipating perhaps as few as five -- or as many as 10 or more -- of their editorial department colleagues will be shown the door.

The Chron late last month began making rumblings about trimming more union positions. While many newsroom employees anticipate only a small number of their colleagues will go, Guild Rep Carl T. Hall told SF Weekly that no department at the paper is immune from cuts.

In addition to layoffs, some employees have, reportedly, accepted buyouts. Veteran Chron editor Ken Conner accepted a buyout earlier this month.

Prior to the current round of cutbacks, the Guild placed the paper's layoff and buyout count at 134 -- including 78 from the editorial department. 

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