Dark days are ahead for the staff of ABC News, as the network has announced plans to cut a quarter of its personnel by the end of 2010. In a memo to staff, ABC News president David Westin gave the broad strokes of what will be a massive restructuring plan, and will begin with buy-out offers in the coming days. Prompted by the recession, and the opportunities afforded by new technology in the digital age (read: the ability to do more with fewer people), Westin says he’s spent the last three months devising how and where to trim staff, which currently total 1,400. “I would not be pursuing this if I thought we would be compromising the news,” he says. The announcement comes as CBS is in the midst of layoffs, and NBC underwent cutbacks two years ago.