News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Lehmans

Meaden & Moore


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Economy and Business


Plain Dealer employees vote on new contract this week
Pact does not address three-day printing schedule at PD's sister paper
by WKSU's KABIR BHATIA


Reporter
Kabir Bhatia
 
In The Region:
The union representing the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s newsroom is voting this week on a new six-year contract. The package includes layoffs and raises, but makes no mention of cutting back on printed editions to three or four days a week. WKSU’s Kabir Bhatia has more on what the contract likely will mean to newsgathering in Northeast Ohio.
Plain Dealer employees vote on new contract this week

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:00)


Earlier this year, the PD’s sister paper, cut back print editions of the New Orleans Times-Picayune to three days a week. Owner Advance Publications cited waning demand, and is also cutting back on papers in Alabama, Michigan, Pennsylvania and New York.

Rumors of a similar move in Cleveland are not addressed by the paper’s proposed contract with its newsroom employees. But however many days it prints, it will be doing it with fewer people. 

Layoffs next year
The new pact calls for 58 layoffs next year, and up to five more in 2014. That’s about a third of the current staff. Newspaper Guild President Harlan Spector says the new deal also supplants some seniority.

“The company has said that of the 58 positions they want to eliminate next year in the Guild, they want to decide who’s going to go. They don’t want to offer buyouts. You know, we tried to get that; we pushed for a number of things. Some of which we succeeded on. Some of which we failed on. We got the best deal we could for our members. We bargained for two weeks. And remember, this doesn’t count management. They could also make other additional layoffs in management.”

Some of those folks could end up at the PD’s online arm, Cleveland.com. The new contract allows the print and web newsrooms to share more content than before. But Spector says that could present its own set of journalistic challenges. 

“The question about clicks-driven journalism is, ‘Who are you serving?’ Does the high-click, high-volume stuff supplant serious journalism that doesn’t necessarily get the clicks? I think those are all really legitimate questions and serious questions for the field of journalism.”

Web and print mix
For years, Cleveland.com has been driven by content from the Plain Dealer. The new deal opens up the sharing the other way, with greater flexibility for management to use on-line content in the printed paper.

During negotiations, the Guild mounted a public campaign focusing on fears that the paper was heading toward three-day publication. That’s not in the contract – but not blocked by the contract either.

What's not being covered
Julie Moos has covered the negotiations for the Poynter Institute and says it’s too soon to gauge the long-term effects of the reduced publications in other cities. 

“Well, we don’t know about any corruption that was not uncovered because news organizations scaled back the staff that could have been investigating and uncovering them. That’s part of what’s scary about a change like this. One of the things that’s sort of unspoken sometimes is that even if you get your news online, a lot of that still originates with a traditional news organization. So you don’t know how much of that you’re going to lose by cutting the capacity of the reporting. Whether they’re delivering seven days or printing seven days or not.” 

On the financial end, the tentative contract restores a pay that was cut in 2009 and adds some severance benefits, though it continues some unpaid furlough days.

The new contract will be voted on Tuesday. If it’s defeated, the paper faces layoffs of at least 80 people. Spector says most employees consider it a bitter pill, but says it beats the alternative.
Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Ohio to appeal ruling keeping Akron's red light cameras in place
I don't understand what all the fuss is about. If you don't like tickets drive the speed limit and stop at red lights. It's really all up to you.

Who's on public assistance in Ohio?
legalize marijuana get over it,,, its here its been the main drug test scare of a lifetime. u got people that get drunk every night and work u got peoples on ...

Letters from a lost friend: A Beachwood survivor's Holocaust remembrance
What a great story -- and how important it was for both Marlene and her mother to tell it! Thank you.

Ohio lawmaker calls for an East Cleveland bailout
Instead of blaming Kasich and the Republicans for all of East Cleveland's fiscal woes, take a look at the facts. Some political entities in Ohio are too small ...

Legalized marijuana is a boon for a Cleveland-area grow light maker
Shouldn't he be in jail for paraphernalia? He knows he is selling for marijuana production.

Akron city council to vote on resolution for hiring ex-offenders
Great as a taxpayer I paid for the police to catch them, the free lawyer, the jail to house them , the food their kids eat the medical for them and all its goin...

5 of 8 rule headed for a vote
this is just another way for kasich to pass the buck and claim that it gives the local districts control. Few schools have enough money because of his cuts. T...

A passionate debate about parole in Ohio
I was heartened to hear that the legislators will consider ANY legislation to break the chains the parole board has put on these old law offenders who have serv...

Bill would allow Ohio religious leaders to refuse to do gay marriages
This is just a lot of political posturing. The free exercise clause of the 1st Amendment already protects clergy from being forced by civil authorities to perfo...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University