Loyalty Shown the Door
Longtime CQ editor fired after questioning merger-related layoffs.
Brian Nutting showed his loyalty to the wrong group of peopleâ€”or at least thatâ€™s what his bosses thought.
Following the round of 44 layoffs at the CQ-Roll Call Groupâ€”associated with parent company the Economist Groupâ€™s merger of recently-acquired Congressional Quarterly and Roll Callâ€”the 27-year CQ editor sent an e-mail to CQ-Roll Call Group executive vice president and managing director Laurie Battaglia, editorial director Mike Mills and the entire newsroom, demanding an explanation from top brass in regard to the cuts.
â€śWe were told that the people in the company were highly valued,â€ť Nutting wrote. â€śAnd now this.â€ť
That e-mail, or apparently not showing remorse for writing it, landed him a pink slip. In a memo to staffers Tuesday, posted by Mediabistroâ€™s FishbowlDC, Mills wrote that Nutting had left the company â€śeffective today.â€ť
That same day, Nutting told Politicoâ€™s Michael Calderone, who has covered the acquisition and subsequent merger extensively, that he was fired for â€śinsubordination.â€ť â€śI guess I was given one last chance to say I was sorry, that Iâ€™d done something impulsive, and I apologize," he told Calderone, indicating that he refused to apologize. â€śI didnâ€™t feel like I could turn my back on the people I worked with," he said.
Itâ€™s a tough time in magazine publishing right now, and Iâ€™m sure there are A LOT of people in the industry who arenâ€™t, and wonâ€™t, speak up about management missteps for fear of losing their jobs. Donâ€™t get me wrong, thoughâ€”Iâ€™m not saying that the CQ-Roll Call Group layoffs were necessarily the result of mismanagement.
What I am saying is that this isn't the first time weâ€™ve seen a passionate editor stand up for what he/she believesâ€”even with their job on the line. And I hope it isnâ€™t the last.
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