The New York Times building. Photo: Eduardo MunozAlvarez/VIEWpress/Corbis via Getty Images

The New York Times has laid off 68 people, mostly on its advertising team, the company said in an internal memo to employees Tuesday, obtained by Axios. There were no layoffs in the company's newsroom or opinion sections.

Context: The company alluded to layoffs in its ad sales division in May amid the economic upheaval caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Details: Most of the staff eliminations come from The Times' ad sales team, as well as from its experiential marketing agency Fake Love, which the company previously announced it was closing after its acquisition in 2016, according to a note to staff from Times CEO Mark Thompson and COO Meredith Levien that went out late Tuesday.

  • According to the memo, the company has created a special package to support departing employees that includes a minimum of 16 weeks of severance and medical benefits, a $6,000 payment to help with job transition costs, such as a new laptop or COBRA expenses, and six months of outplacement services.

Be smart: In the memo, Thompson and Levien concede that while the cuts are driven by the pandemic, they also "reflect long-term trends in our business and are fully consistent with the company’s strategy."

  • The Times in recent years has transitioned most of its revenue from corporate advertising to consumer subscriptions.
  • The company said during its first quarter earnings report in May that it saw more than a half-million new subscribers — roughly double the amount of net new subscriptions that it typically sees in any given quarter.
  • But it also conceded that despite the fact that more people are hungry for news, the company expected to bring in less ad revenue this quarter due to the pandemic.

The big picture: Dozens of publishers have had to take drastic measures, including layoffs, pay cuts and furloughs, to survive the advertising losses driven by corporate uncertainty related to the coronavirus.

  • The New York Times was one of the first major publishers to concede in a government filing in March that it expected global advertising revenue to be down.

Go deeper: NYT reports record new subscriptions, warns of major ad losses

Go deeper

Sep 17, 2020 - Technology

Facebook launches Business Suite to link messaging apps

Photo: Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Facebook on Thursday launched a new app named Facebook Business Suite that lets small businesses manage their pages and profiles across Facebook, Instagram and Facebook Messenger from a single interface.

Why it matters: The app is the first product Facebook has launched that combines the backend infrastructure for three of its messaging apps. The company has teased this move for over a year.

Updated Sep 18, 2020 - Health

U.S. coronavirus updates

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Data: The COVID Tracking Project; Note: Does not include probable deaths from New York City; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

49% of U.S. adults said in a recent Pew survey they would not get a coronavirus vaccine if one were available today.

Why it matters: All major political and demographic groups said they are less likely to get a vaccine now than they were in May, although Republicans and Black adults are the least likely.

A court fight for the ages

The flag flies at half-staff as people mourn on the Supreme Court steps last night. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Ruth Bader Ginsburg — feminist icon, legal giant, toast of pop culture — left this statement with granddaughter Clara Spera as cancer closed in: "My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed."

The big picture: For all that the nation owes "Notorious RBG" — the hip-hop-inspired nickname she enjoyed and embraced — Republicans are planning to do their best to be sure her robe is quickly filled, despite that last wish, with her ideological polar opposite.