LOS ANGELES - Tribune Company chairman Sam Zell told the L.A. Times staff they're free to watch porn at their desks all day as long as they're productive, according to a report in the New York Observer.

The billionaire publisher made the off-the-cuff remark about "newsroom decorum" yesterday in a morning meeting with the Times staff, emphasizing that a news organization should not block access to any website.

"Let me know if you find any good sites," he joked.

Zell bought the Tribune Company in 2007. As the corporation's chairman and chief executive, he now controls the Times, the Chicago Tribune, New York Newsday and the Chicago Cubs.

A newsroom source told the Observer that the meeting was characterized by "a lot of laughter and a lot of clapping. A lot of good energy."