Shopnotes Fun Fact! The exciting new Hearst employee online fitness plan is being rolled out at the same time that the company is seeking to take away employee sick-leave banks. If that makes your blood pressure go up, you could have gotten it checked for free on enrollment day in Jeff Johnson’s office
DFM management came to a bargaining session empty-handed, telling a national coalition of NewsGuild representatives that the company’s hedge fund ownership intends to keep employee pay frozen companywide to help maintain its profits. Alden Global Capital, principal owner of Digital First Media, has earned worldwide notoriety for its ruthless staff cuts and double-digit profit margins. The ongoing damage to newsrooms across the country has triggered protests from New York to Denver to the Bay Area.
An overwhelming majority of the 63 unionized workers in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser newsroom voted on April 25 to ratify a five-year contract with owner Oahu Publications Inc.
The North Bay newspaper’s Pulitzer – in the Breaking News category – continues an impressive run of journalism for newsrooms covered by the Pacific Media Workers Guild. The East Bay Times won a Pulitzer in 2016 for breaking news coverage of the Ghost Ship fire in Oakland.
Chronicle Guild negotiators rejected Hearst Corp.’s demand to eliminate union jurisdiction over the marketing and advertising departments. Our committee sent a letter on Monday to convey that stance to the management.
Members of the Bay Area News Group newsroom staff, winners of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news coverage of the deadly Ghost Ship Fire, publicly denounced their corporate owner’s business practices Thursday.
It was standing room only in the historic Chronicle boardroom as more than 30 Guild members showed up for the monthly contract negotiations to protest the company’s refusal to pay experience step raises during the negotiating period.
When the National Labor Relations Board began calling out the votes Jan. 19 from the Los Angeles Times’ Jan. 4 election on whether to unionize, it seemed to be neck and neck, recalled Matt Pearce, a national reporter and union organizer at the Times. Then, the pro-union ballots started to pull away. At one point, 40 yeses in a row were read off, by the count of data journalist Anthony Pesce, also an organizer.
Bargaining continued in late January, early February at all four McClatchy California units (The Modesto Bee, The Fresno Bee, The Sacramento Bee and News Desk West). Full contracts are up at Modesto, Fresno and News Desk West while Sacramento has a reopener. The guild and company were able to narrow bargaining to a few core issues during each of the sessions. They include the new metrics for page view goals, seniority language in the case of layoffs, minimum salary levels and merit pay scales, equipment reimbursement, and drug policy.
Twenty-one Guild members are being bought out and layoffs are next. How many more people will be let go is not known.