There are conflicting reports about whether he’s been sacked or resigned at this stage although there has been much speculation about his departure for a long time.
An email from the company’s CEO Don Churchill makes it clear that the traumatised company wanted a new approach to editorial direction in the newspaper and that is probably code for “he was sacked.”
Churchill told staff the company “decided that for this next critical stage of The Age we would have fresh editorial and executive leadership”.
Yesterday there was also blood on the carpet in the Spencer Street Soviet as the head of sales Anthony Catalano was axed by the advertising director David Hoath, fresh from his overseas travels with key Age advertisers.
An Age insider told VEXNEWS that “Jaspan was made certain promises at the start about quality and headcount. Those promises were not kept.”
Another said “Sacking fifty journalists while pretending the same standards can be maintained is simply not what anyone would ever want to do. Although Ramadge will probably enjoy that part of the job, which he’ll prosecute with all the enthusiasm of a gleeful jailhouse snitch. He should enjoy it while it lasts, I doubt he’ll be allowed to be editor for very long.”
Churchill confirmed that a decision about a permanent successor would be made “soon.” Age insiders noted that finding a world-class new Editor usually takes several months and that the newspaper will be a “rudder-less ship” with Ramadge in charge.
“Anyone who’s ever crossed Ramadge has good reason to be nervous. He’ll be coming up with hit-lists as we speak.”
Jaspan’s departure will be hailed by those who were concerned about the increasingly stridently left-wing editorial positions taken by The Age.