Hearst Mag Staffers Vote to Unionize

Hearst magazine employees, including those dealing with their online and video presence, have decided to unionize with Writers Guild of America East, joining other newsrooms in the WGAE shop including Vox Media, MTV News and the Onion.

WGAE announced that the majority of the 500 staffers across 24 brands, had signed union cards, which means WGAE represents almost 6,000 news writers in TV, film, print and new media.

Hearst is one of the largest editorial employers, the WGAE's Hearst organizing committee pointed out in announcing the move. Titles include Autoweek, Best Products, Bicycling, Car & Driver, Cosmopolitan, Country Living, Delish, Elle, Elle Decor, Esquire, Fashion hub, Good Housekeeping, Harper’s Bazaar, House Beautiful, Marie Claire, Men’s Health, The Oprah Magazine, Popular Mechanics, Prevention, Road & Track, Runner’s World, Seventeen, Town & Country, Veranda, Woman’s Day and Women’s Health.

The committee said it expected Hearst to recognize the union through a "fair, voluntary, recognition process," as CBS and others have done.

The union said it wants Hearst to focus on diversity, transparency about decision making and management structure, competitive pay and clear comp time policies, IP rights, a "clear division" between advertising and editorial, and a "transparent" e-commerce strategy.

Hearst spokespeople were not available for immediate comment at press time. 

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.