More layoffs @ NGM

At least four more people were laid off this week at NGM.

Details as we get them….

UPDATE: Make that six (6) NGM staffers laid off — three of them Society veterans.

UPDATE 2: These cutbacks are a function of the Magazine’s continued financial nosedive, of course. NGM’s primary revenue stream has long been Society membership dues, which have been heading south for years:

And while selling NGM’s brand equity to Shell and Lipton and other corporate partners might temporarily compensate for this financial freefall, we believe this advertising strategy is a dead end (as we’ve noted before).

In related news, here’s a financial snapshot of annual compensation for our Magazine’s Editor-in-Chief:

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≡  Source: Guidestar.org
(NGS financial data available only through 2008)

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  • J. Reid

    I don’t know why I read this blog. You are so clearly angry and so clearly believe that NG belongs in the dark ages. You can’t want to be the ‘old’ Society and rail against global expansion while also talking up online sharing. You sound like Glenn Beck and those Tea Party wackos.

    Becoming an international organization was the smartest thing that the people in charge have done in the last 50 years. Becoming partners with FOX, well I urge you to watch The Daily Show’s recent take on terrorism and you will find Rupert front and center.

    It would be great if you got off your well written rant about ‘our’ Society and your myopic focus driven by anger and get onto the profound dysfunction at the National Geographic Society.

    You can not blame Chris Johns for doing the job he was hand picked to do.

    It’s clear someone who works at NG is giving you access to information, though it is incomplete. News flash, the economy is in chaos and the Society-not yours, never yours/ours-is not immune to it. Not to say that editorial quality hasn’t declined but then this generation is not interested in the great white father.

    You can’t have it your way. Keep in mind it never was your way, in reality or in the myth.

    I am interested in how you found out how much money Chris Johns is making? Why don’t you post how much all the people in senior management are making? Start with John Fahey, Tim Kelly, Terry Adamson, Chris Liedel, Bob Poole, Nina Hoffman, Terry Garcia, Betty Hudson, David Beal, Ted Prince, Michael Rosenfeld, Jackie Hollister, Mark Bauman, Melinda Bellows, Keith Bellows, John Griffin and the Board of Trustees.

    I think the staff who are reading would be interested in reading that ugly piece of information.

    Print that.

    • Hi JR- Thanks for stopping by again. I don’t have time for a long reply right now, but a few quick thoughts…

      – Glenn Beck? Tea Party? Me?? Hardly. If I admired the far right, why would I post those recent items from the Daily Show & from Mayor Bloomberg’s press conference re: Park51? Politically I think you’ve mischaracterized me.

      – Internationalization is a good thing — to a point. But as I’ve said repeatedly, China & Saudi Arabia are a bridge too far, mostly because an audience that global means we can no longer talk honestly about the things that make us different & that matter most (e.g., democracy).

      – Anger? Me? Not at all. I wish National Geographic all the best. And I’m still a dues-paying member. I simply believe they’re making decisions with a short-term payback (advertising) but painfully high costs in the long term (abandoning a membership model with no other biz plan in sight).

      – Salaries of all senior execs of non-profits are available free via Guidestar — see the form 990s. FYI: Bob Poole doesn’t work there anymore, and hasn’t for years. As for “ugly information” — I’m not sure I’d characterize it that way. Sounds too “angry” for me. 🙂 … But it is stunning what some of the senior execs make, don’t you think? I have the numbers (though not for all the people you mention). You really want to see them?

      I’d just like to reiterate that I’m fascinated by what’s happening at NGS. It’s a great microcosm of a whole bunch of issues that I find riveting, esp globalization, the future of journalism, and the defense of democracies & open societies. But instead of thinking about these big issues in the abstract, you can see them playing out at NGS in revealing ways. NGS is a wonderful case study AND a place that’s small enough that change is possible.

      Do I hope NGS will alter its current course? Yes. Do I want to return to some mythic past? No. But NGM still has more than 4 million people paying attention to what they have to say. My fear is that the Magazine will continue to carry on about the same old subjects in the same old way — while millions more members head for the exits. Soon the numbers will be much smaller, and then it’ll be too late.

      Does that make sense?

      Thanks again for stopping by… and for reading.

      best,
      Alan

  • Hi JR- Thanks for stopping by again. I don’t have time for a long reply right now, but a few quick thoughts…

    – Glenn Beck? Tea Party? Me?? Hardly. If I admired the far right, why would I post those recent items from the Daily Show & from Mayor Bloomberg’s press conference re: Park51? Politically I think you’ve mischaracterized me.

    – Internationalization is a good thing — to a point. But as I’ve said repeatedly, China & Saudi Arabia are a bridge too far, mostly because an audience that global means we can no longer talk honestly about the things that make us different & that matter most (e.g., democracy).

    – Anger? Me? Not at all. I wish National Geographic all the best. And I’m still a dues-paying member. I simply believe they’re making decisions with a short-term payback (advertising) but painfully high costs in the long term (abandoning a membership model with no other biz plan in sight).

    – Salaries of all senior execs of non-profits are available free via Guidestar — see the form 990s. FYI: Bob Poole doesn’t work there anymore, and hasn’t for years. As for “ugly information” — I’m not sure I’d characterize it that way. Sound too “angry” for me. 🙂 … But it *is* stunning what some of the senior execs make, don’t you think? I have the numbers (though not for all the people you mention). You really want to see them?

    I’d just like to reiterate that I’m fascinated by what’s happening at NGS. It’s a great microcosm of a whole bunch of issues that I find riveting, esp globalization, the future of journalism, and the defense of democracies & open societies. But instead of thinking about these big issues in the abstract, you can see them playing out at NGS in revealing ways. NGS is a great case study AND a place that’s small enough that change is possible. Do I hope NGS will alter its current course? Yes. Do I want to return to some mythic past? No. But NGM still has more than 4 million people paying attention to what they have to say. My fear is that the Magazine will continue to carry on about the same old subjects in the same old way — while millions more members head for the exits. Soon the numbers will be much smaller, and then it’ll be too late.

    Does that make sense?

    Thanks again for stopping by… and for reading.
    best,
    Alan

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