So we still have a paper — for now. Most of the unions have met management conditions, but the Guild is holding out, presumably over the lifetime job guarantees they enjoy and that NYT Co. wants to take away.
The more closely I read the coverage, the more impressed I am with the Boston Herald’s reporting of this story. Sure, it’s easy to say that they’re motivated by the prospect of being the only show in town, but I haven’t found their coverage to be too gloating or gleeful. Even in this post where Jessica Heslam complains about the Globe reporter covering the negotiations begin given preferential treatment for workspace, I don’t perceive it as an idle dig. Maybe it’s because that despite working in hallways and on borrowed chairs, she and her counterparts are churning out informational articles like this one, that lay out the offer on the table and the possible scenarios from here on out.
There was lots of good reading today, actually. Dan Kennedy, in two posts, made a ton of salient points. Namely, that an industry built around the concept of deadlines and accurate reporting sure has a fuzzy grasp of those notions in the context of union negotiations. Also, America’s Paper of Record is doing a (understandably, I guess, but still) poor job of reporting its own story (heck, the Globe is not doing better by much), but overall there is less attention being paid to this story nationally than the shutdown of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and the Rocky Mountain News. Are we already inured to the demise of newspaper journalism?
Kennedy also links to this piece by former Globe staffer David Warsh, which provides some useful internal, historical perspective to this latest crisis, as well as critical observations on how decisions made by the NYT Co. affected the paper’s management and the direction of its coverage. The American Prospect’s Ezra Klein chimes with with a nice counterpoint to one aspect of Warsh’s argument that I find very poignant — the Globe would be in dire straits today even if it had been managed ably, simply because the model is no longer sustainable and the industry is in the middle of a shift few, if any, publications got ahead of.