Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Got the Blues: Guild Hits MediaNews CEO Singleton in Music Video

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Got the Blues: Guild Hits MediaNews CEO Singleton in Music Video

Article excerpt

Nowadays, when your local Newspaper Guild unit is having trouble getting a new contract, it's not enough to use the old standbys: picketing, leafleting, and even byline strikes.

You have to have a music video.

Enter the York (Pa.) Newspaper Guild, which recently reached two years since its last labor agreement expired at the York Daily Record, and decided to create a video to highlight it.

"MediaNews Blues" is no MTV hit single. But for the 50-person Guild unit, which is planning to hold its first bargaining session since June today, it is another way to take a shot at MediaNews Group, the paper's owner.

"We still believe they are stonewalling us at the labor table," says Tom Joyce, a local guild leader. "The sticking point has not even been salary. We are worried that they are laying the groundwork for staff reductions and killing the union."

The song, written by former York guild president Bruce Guthrie, now a Washington Post copy editor, and sung by Jeff Lebo, the husband of former guild leader Lori Lebo, is a direct attack at MediaNews CEO Dean Singleton.

Lyrics include:

I fell for the Record and she fell for me.I thought our love was lasting and tender.But it turns out things ain't the way they should be.She's two-timing with a fella from Denver. When the guys went too far, down at the bar,I'd always rise to defend her.But I'm feeling so low, now that I know,She's sending my money to Denver.

Guild leaders have placed the audio over video clips of the union gathering signatures at a local county fair for a subscriber boycott of the Record. …

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