>> Even icons aren't safe anymore. In late December, Village Voice laid off 30-year veteran and fashion writer Lynn Yaeger — she's since been picked up to blog for New York magazine during Fashion Week — and now, the Wall Street Journal has dismissed 23-year veteran Teri Agins as part of a decision to close its fashion and retail bureau.
The number of staffers has been reduced from nine to five — currently retained are columnist Christina Binkley and editor Lisa Bannon; the seven other employees — including Teri Agins, Rachel Dodes, and Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan, who generally writes the newspaper's must-read Heard on the Runway blog — have all been let go effective at the end of March and asked to reapply for the three remaining positions in the bureau.
All WSJ.'s fault? »
It sounds like the fashion bureau was sacrificed to preserve the Journal's nascent luxury magazine, WSJ., which has not been affected. According to one senior Journal writer close to the group, "For the last three years, the Journal has been building up its retail and luxury coverage group and trying to court that advertising. But maybe now they feel that for the next year or 18 months, luxury advertising won't come through — and besides there's the new WSJ. magazine, which is courting the same advertising territory."
Managing editor Robert Thompson sent a memo to staff, vowing that the paper will maintain its fashion coverage, but there's no word on who or how the paper will be covering the upcoming Fashion Weeks.