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Friday, March 20, 2020

I can't quit you just yet, Detroit

Posted By on Fri, Mar 20, 2020 at 9:20 AM

click to enlarge There is no other altnernative. - JOSH COHEN
  • Josh Cohen
  • There is no other altnernative.

Wednesday was a dark day here at Metro Times. With the coronavirus pandemic causing local events, concerts, restaurants, and bars to cancel or close for business as usual, much of our ad revenue has dried up. On Wednesday, our parent company Euclid Media Group made the difficult decision to do mass layoffs in an attempt to weather this period.

To make matters worse, we couldn't even go to the bar after work to commiserate and lick our wounds, because all the damn bars are closed.

At Metro Times, we're now down to a skeleton crew of three editorial staffers, two sales reps, and an art director who will share duties with our other sister papers. This small team will continue digital operations and continue to put out a print edition each week as long as it is economically feasible to do so.

I was asked to stay, and to choose one other editorial staffer to join me. I couldn't, so instead I volunteered to stay on without pay so we could keep two. Both took pay cuts.

Why? This is how my brain works in a crisis, and this was the option that sat the best with me and that I thought was best for the paper. I'm fortunate that I have family that can help support me during this time. If I could have somehow done more to keep everyone, I certainly would have.

And anyway, let's face it: I got nothing else to do right now.

I've been doing this since 2013. It's all I know how to do at this point, and it looks like I'm not the only psycho at Euclid Media Group who refuses to go quietly.

If you can, please make a donation to help us get through this so we can hopefully one day re-hire everybody. And if you can, please hire Sonia Khaleel and Biba Adams, both extremely talented journalists who I hope I can have the pleasure of one day working with again.

In my sweet, short life I've been a golf caddy, a stocker in a 7-Up warehouse, a tutor, and a designer at a sign company. Metro Times is by far my favorite place I've ever worked. I can't let it go just yet.

And if I can spend my time helping Detroit stay informed and entertained during this uncertain time, then I will do so as long as I can.

Remember to wash your hands.

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