The Huffington Post is the latest digital media company to unionize.
The Writers Guild of America East said Wednesday that HuffPo editors planned to join the New York-based union.
The company is just one of a string of digital media firms to unionize this year. Editors from Gawker Media, Vice Media, Salon Media and ThinkProgress joined WGA East earlier this year. They joined digital editors from The Guardian U.S. and Al Jazeera, who unionized with News Guild-CWA.
“Digital technology is transforming the way people work, and the way information is communicated, the way stories are crafted, distributed and consumed,” said WGA East director Lowell Peterson. “Collective bargaining is transforming the way writers, editors and video employees in digital media build their careers. We look forward to working with the editorial employees at Huffington Post, men and women whose skill and dedication are evident in their work and in the strength of their collective voice.”
On its decision to unionize, The Huffington Post said: “The creative freedom we enjoy is one of the things that makes HuffPost a great place to work. We believe organizing is the best way both to preserve what’s already working and to bring about positive change. Simply, a union will give us a voice in our newsroom’s future.”
The company said it hopes to make pay and compensation “more transparent and equitable,” and added that it looked to establish clarity on job responsibilities, as well as standards for hiring, firing and disciplinary actions.
Another positive would be attracting more diversity in the newsroom and negotiating a contract that would allow for more “editorial freedom and independence.”
“By negotiating a contract, we hope to formalize HuffPost’s commitment to fearless journalism so that powerful people and institutions can’t use their influence to dictate our coverage or squash stories that are unflattering,” the company said.