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In NYC, a Village Voice strike looms

Thursday, June 30, 2011

imageThe union that represents workers at the Village Voice, the flagship of Arizona-based Village Voice Media (of which SF Weekly is a part), is set to strike at midnight if there’s no accord with management. None appears likely. But the staffers’ Plan B is somewhat novel. They intend to keep working, publishing on Tumblr, where management can’t sell ads. After the jump, here’s the plan as outlined at site-in-waiting

Over the past three years, the Voice staff has been cut by an estimated 60%, and average annual salaries have markedly diminished. Management has so far played hardball with the union, refusing to make an offer, while demanding extensive concessions from the newspaper’s staff, including a substantial, ever-increasing contribution to an inferior health plan, as well as the elimination of management’s own contribution to employees’ retirement accounts. The union membership sees the quality of their medical coverage as the critical issue. “That’s why I came to work here,” said one staff writer. “The health insurance is the one thing that made low wages bearable.”

In the event of a work stoppage, writers, bloggers, photographers, editors, designers, and sales staff—as well as former Voice staff members and other supporters—will be publishing an alternate website,, where readers will find the same high-quality writing there that they currently enjoy in the paper and on Voice blogs.

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