At three papers in south-west New South Wales, Fairfax is getting rid of its subeditors. Not outsourcing them, as has been done at Fairfax's metropolitan papers, or reducing their number, as has been done just about everywhere. Under new production plans being rolled out at the Daily Advertiser, the Area News and The Irrigator, reporters will be expected to check their own copy for errors and cut it to length.
It's not the only thing they'll be required to do. They'll also have to write their own headlines, caption their own stories, and increasingly, take their own pictures. It's the philosophy of the NewsNow system, which was rolled out at least partially last year at the Bendigo Advertiser (the Advertiser did not do away with all the production roles facing the axe under the current model), the first Fairfax paper to transition to the system.