Tag Archives: The Press

Newsquest staff to vote on strike action over ‘subbing hub’

Nearly 80 Newsquest journalists are to vote on whether to take strike action in protest over plans to axe 14 subbing jobs in Darlington and York.

Newsquest plans to create a subbing hub in Bradford, which is 70 miles from Darlington, where the production of the weekly papers will take place.

The sub-editing of the dailies, the Northern Echo in Darlington and the Press in York, will remain at the existing locations.

Four jobs will be created in Bradford as subbing operations move during the next six months.

Members of the National Union of Journalists at Darlington, Durham, Northallerton, Bishop Auckland and York will take part in the ballot, which closes on 3 May.

“Newsquest needs to convince us, their staff and in all probability themselves, that this plan can work but management has shied away from that debate. At some point Newsquest will have to stop the cuts and start taking all their staff with them – in all senses of the words,” NUJ northern and midlands organiser Chris Morley said in a statement.

Pew Center: Press accuracy drops to two-decade low, says survey

Public belief in the accuracy of news stories has fallen two its lowest level in more than 20 years, a new survey from the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press suggests.

Of those Americans surveyed (around 1,506 in July this year), 29 per cent said news organisations ‘generally get the facts straight’; 63 per cent said news stories are often inaccurate.

The independence of news organisations and their ability to concede mistakes were also rated at an all-time low, according to the study, which also looks at local news coverage and the public’s reaction to the closure of news outlets.

Full survey summary at this link…

CPJ releases ‘Attacks on the Press in 2008’ report

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) released its ‘Attacks on the Press in 2008’ report yesterday and speaking in the preface, Carl Bernstein made two comments that neatly highlight the duplicitious nature of the web when it comes to press freedom:

“[T]he tension between technology and outright repression – the availability of satellite television, the use of the internet as impetus for growth and economic modernization – has rendered obsolete the old methods of press control and suppression of information such as media nationalization and overt censorship.


“In China, which now has more than a quarter billion online users, self-censorship is enforced through government rules and regulations that guide Internet service providers about what news can be posted and who can post it (…) In every country following the Chinese model, internet access has been severely restricted or the plug pulled entirely during periods of potential social unrest.”

Last year CPJ’s imprisonment index noted that more online journalists were in jail than those working in any other media.

While the US’ ranking in terms of imprisoned journalists is low, the country’s actions have ‘a disproportionate impact’ on the rest of the world. With a new administration comes new hope for global press freedom, Bernstein adds.

“President Barack Obama must recognise that whenever the United States fails to uphold press freedom at home or on the battlefield, its actions ripple across the world. By scrupulously upholding press freedom at home, by ending the practice of open-ended detentions of journalists, and by investigating and learning from each instance in which the US military is responsible for the death of a journalist, Obama can send an unequivocal message about the country’s commitment to protecting press freedom. These policies might accelerate declines in the numbers of journalists killed and imprisoned. They will certainly make it much harder for governments worldwide to justify repressive policies by citing the actions of the United States.”

RCFP: Subpoena to blogger demands identities of readers

“A Virginia-based blogger is fighting a subpoena that seeks the identities of everyone who viewed an online article he wrote about a defamation lawsuit”, the Reporters Committee fro Freedom of the Press reports, via the Citizen Media Law Project.

Full story at this link…

Newsquest York journalists seal pay deal

National Union of Journalists (NUJ) members at Newsquest’s The Press and Gazette & Herald in York have accepted a three per cent salary rise – the result of long-term negotiations and industrial action at the titles.

In May NUJ members at Newsquest York staged a five-day strike over the proposed three per cent pay increase.

According to a release from the NUJ, the pay deal will be backdated to January and includes a 17 per cent increase for new trainees and a 13 per cent rise for specialist reporters.

Negotiations about 2009 salaries have been brought forward and are expected to begin shortly, the union said.