America's Paper of Record cannot afford to have its reporters sending text messages or calling 411 on their company phones. What a pitiful state of affairs.

The New York Observer got this internal staff memo today from NYT deputy managing editor Bill Schmidt to the newsroom, telling them: 1. Do NOT make international calls on your company-issued cell phones and Blackberries; 2. Do not call 411; 3. Please try not to send text messages.

Although we recognize that texting has become an indispensable means of communication for many people, our basic company plans with Verizon and AT&T do not provide for unlimited texting. A lot of texting costs us a lot of money, whether as a per-message fee or as an unlimited-message add-on.

So please use discretion when deciding to send a text, especially if a voice call or e-mail would get your message to the recipient equally well. Do not use Twitter via text messages; install a client like Twitterberry on your phone instead. Do not send picture or video messages ("MMS") from company phones except for work purposes. And do not text from overseas.

Good lord, you are a newspaper company in the communications business, NYT. Jesus Christ you guys are broke. I think I pay about $5 a month for unlimited text messages, and I don't even have a massive corporate account.
Next staff memo: Did you know you can walk right into TD Bank and pick up as many free pens as you want? Please do so!
[NYO. Pic via]