Newspaper execs usually don’t like announcing job cuts, so there are some obvious built in biases in the Associated Press Managing Editors’ survey, but there appears to be a widespread feeling that the staff reductions have made the job of news gathering much more difficult for newspapers. Roughly 71 percent of the 351 editors publishers participating in the survey said the ability to inform readers has diminished with their steadily shrinking staffs, the AP reported. Only 20 percent there had been little impact from layoffs. About 65 of the respondents said they laid off staff in the past year. The responses include several responses from one newspaper, but AP notes that this was one of the highest responses APME has received to its periodic questionnaires. —Hope springs eternal: On the subject of the “death of newspapers,” just 17 percent said they believed the industry would go extinct. About 60 percent said their publications would find their way back to profitability. More after the jump —Ad shrinkage: The AP said that about $11.6 billion—approximately one-fourth—of the industry’s annual advertising revenue since 2005 has been lost and staff reductions have been the main way newspapers have tried to cope. Secondly, the challenge of the blogs, which typically have much smaller staffs, have also called into the question the viability of maintaining large newsrooms. And despite the large responses to ASME’s survey, a number of media executives have been calling for newspapers to shrink their staffs if they want to survive. Last month, Thomson Reuters (NSDQ: TRIN) CEO Tom Glocer told an off-the-record gathering of new media execs that the NYT could get by with 60 reporters instead of 600-700 reporters. Of course, the news staff shortage has made services like Reuters and the AP a bit more crucial to newspapers, especially as they cut national and international coverage. —The latest cut count: As for how things are looking this year, PaperCuts, the newspaper job loss counter, said there have been 9,162 jobs lost this year so far; in ‘08, the site said 15,970 posts were eliminated either through layoffs or buyouts.