By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

A tale of intrigue and resentment

It’s hard to imagine that members of the Boston Newspaper Guild won’t approve the deal offered by New York Times Co. management to keep the Boston Globe alive. But in today’s Boston Herald, Jessica Heslam tells a tale of intrigue and resentment so byzantine that it makes you wonder. Let’s just say this is unlikely to be a slam dunk.

Here’s the best part: among other things, some Guild members are upset that their leaders have been more forthcoming with their public-relations firm, O’Neill and Associates, than with the rank-and-file. And who speaks up on behalf of O’Neill? Cosmo Macero, former business editor of the Herald. Talk about what goes around.

The major parameters of the deal, according to Heslam’s piece and to Rob Gavin and Keith O’Brien’s story in the Globe, amount to an approximately 10 percent wage cut (8.3 percent plus five days of unpaid furlough) and an end to lifetime job guarantees for about 190 Guild members. As O’Brien and Steve Syre observe, the package could make the Globe more attractive to potential buyers.

As for the pain that lies ahead, the Herald’s Jay Fitzgerald takes a look at the San Francisco Chronicle, a paper similar to the Globe in circulation. Fitzgerald writes that the Chronicle is “now cutting about 150 jobs within its largest union alone, less than two months after it agreed to major contract revisions.”

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4 Comments

  1. rozzie02131

    It wouldn’t shock me if they voted against it. Some might look at the deal and decide that a buy-out, or even severance pay, is a better deal. Then they could get on with the next chapter of their lives, instead of waiting for the next axe to fall. Sadly, that seems to be the only visible business plan for the Globe right now.

  2. Bill Toscano

    You believe something the Herald writes, but you don’t believe many when he says it was an honest mistake?Hmmmmmm.

  3. Dan Kennedy

    Bill: I think you mean Manny. If it were an honest mistake, he would have produced the proper documentation and asked not to be punished. His actions prove he’s a liar. Open and shut.

  4. Rick in Duxbury

    So much for bargaining in good faith by the NYT. “Best and final offer”, my a$$.

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