I was disheartened today to read several PG journalists making generalized rude comments about blogs in response to a piece on Jekko.com about a potential full strike and shutdown of the paper. Jekko can defend themselves quite nicely, but I strenuously object to describing blogs as “reputable” and “not” as if we are all journalist wanna bees who sit around hoping for a freelance crumb to fall our way. When I pushed back on the characterization, I was told that it wasn’t personal to me, just bloggers who befoul the reputation of professional journalists? Or something.
Anyway, there’s been a non-apology offered by one of the journalists. I’m going to wait and see if they realize that their elitist misunderstanding of blogs is showing and might be part of the larger problem. The idea is to punch up, not swing haphazardly.
I don’t need patronized or included in journalist groupies. How insulting.
The poor damage control now means I linked to the Jekko piece which is the exact opposite of what they wanted. And my participation in the byline strike is now up in the air. If I’m just a blogger, albeit a “good girl blogger”, why should my participation matter? I could be out writing fake news that day. ~ Sue
The Pittsburgh Current has issued a call for all Pittsburgh journalists, bloggers, and writers to show solidarity with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette staff by witholding bylines the week of December 10, 2019. The Current print issue that week will be sans by headlines as a public show of support.
As an employee of a competing media company, you’re not supposed to care what happens at places like the P-G. I’ve worked in this market for a long time and for me I’ve had moments of resentment toward editorial employees there because they were making “big money” at a union shop and I was making, let’s just say less than big money. But the fact is, none of us make what we deserve. We’re all in the same boat, but we’ve been conditioned not to throw our enemies a lifesaver. When you get down to it, though, we all have the same two goals: To provide the public with accurate, useful and important information and to make enough money to support our families.
That’s become harder to do because of wage freezes, layoffs, union-busting, and lower starting salaries. What’s going on at the P-G is not OK and those of us who care about this business need to step up and support the workers at the paper. The Guild is asking those unhappy with how the Blocks and Burris are running the company to let them know by email at [email protected], [email protected], and [email protected].
Any writer can participate – doesn’t matter if you are part of a print newspaper or publish online.
As a Pgh Current columnist, I will be participating in the print (and online) byline strike. Here at Pittsburgh Lesbian Correspondents, we will also participate by withholding bylines for the entire week.
Practical tip -> if you are using blogging software, you can create a new author account to attribute posts during that week so the software will attribute the post to the creative user name you use.
I belong to the National Writer’s Union and will invite other Pittsburgh members to participate along with bloggers and freelance writers who self-publish.
The actions of the Block family are abhorrent and shameful. A robust free press is central to democracy, especially in a region like ours where partisan politics have held away over every institution in our life for decades.
We need fair and balanced reporting by professional journalists who are skilled in their craft. We need more boots on the ground covering the stories that shape our region, in the courtrooms and criminal justice system, in the health care industry, in our public schools, and beyond. We need a professional media who know what questions to ask and how to access public information. We need truth, accuracy, and accountability.
I am not a journalist, but I am a columnist, writer, and blogger. I count on my colleagues to keep me informed via the Post-Gazette, local tv and radio broadcast news, and other outlets.
As a Pittsburgher who lives on the Northside, I cannot subscribe to any other daily regional print paper – they don’t distribute the Observer-Reporter, the Times-New Leader, the Eagle in my neighborhood. I take a weekly paper – The New Courier – and the Sunday New York Times. Together, they expand my understanding of my world, but they do not replace a daily local paper.
We all suffer from the constrictions on the Post-Gazette. This is one way to push back and demonstrate how much we value the staff who create the publication we need.
If you plan to participate, please leave a comment with your publication information. You can use the image below if you write about your participation.