Scotsman group defers pay review and explores merging of production

THE Scotsman group of newspapers has become the latest media outlet to announce a pay freeze, at the same time instructing one of its editors to look into merging the production of all three of its titles – The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday and the Edinburgh Evening News.

Says group managing director, Michael Johnston, in a memo to staff, it’s technically a deferment of the January pay review to July.

And Evening News’ editor, John McLellan, is understood to have been given a week to report on the practicalities of pooling production.

Like elsewhere in the Scottish media scene, the economic recession is being cited for the pay review decision.

Johnston writes: “It is imperative for the long-term security of the business that we do everything we can to contain costs.”

He continues: “By deferring salary reviews for six months, it is hoped that we will be in a better position to determine the overall impact of the recession on trading and decide whether a salary increase can be afforded.”

Johnston Press’s share price closed on Friday at 7.97p.