Coming on the heels of three reports casting doubt on the financial health of Times Publishing Co., Chief Executive Officer Paul Tash sent a memo to employees on March 1 outlining plans to defer contributions to the Times’ employees’ pension plan.
The tone of the memo is one of misdirection, with Tash channeling his inner Obi-Wan Kenobi by essentially saying these aren’t the droids you’re looking for.
“You are welcome to pore over the official version of this application,” Tash writes, “but as a member of this plan, I will find more interesting uses for my time.”
Isn’t it ironic to read a journalist passive-aggressively attempting to have other journalists not waste their time reading an official document impacting their personal finances? Imagine if the subject of a Times investigation replied to a reporter’s inquiry with “You’re welcome to pore over Document X, but certainly you can find more interesting uses for your time.”
Or as the source of the memo wrote to media critic Jim Romenesko, “Interesting that a day after you have the Tampa Trib piece on the Tampa Bay Times’ interesting financial picture, the Times sends out a letter saying it plans to underfund the pension account, but [says] ‘trust us, we’re fine.’”
Again, these aren’t the droids you are looking for.