media deathwatch

Boston Globe Still Alive, Struggling

In today’s news, unions at the Boston Globe struggle to come to terms with the odious wage cuts the New York Times Company has demanded. Meanwhile, OK! magazine suffers at the newsstand, ad pages for business-to-business magazines fall dramatically, and a crazy alt-weekly decides to outsource its content to India just to prove what a dumb idea that is.

• Members of two of the Boston Globe’s major unions last night narrowly ratified contracts that will cut their pay and benefits by more than $7 million, bringing the Globe’s owner closer to achieving the savings it says it needs to keep operating the paper. [Boston Globe]

• But wait! A group of Boston Globe newsroom employees is circulating a petition calling on Globe management to limit pay cuts to 5 percent, arguing that the contract proposal that seeks about twice that amount is “in extraordinary danger” of rejection by their union. Their union, the Boston Newspaper Guild, is scheduled to vote June 8 on a final offer from the paper’s owner, the New York Times Company, that seeks an 8.4 percent pay cut, plus five days of unpaid furlough, in addition to cuts to health-care and retirement benefits. The combined wage cuts add up to about 10 percent. [Boston Globe]

• Though former Gotham editor-in- chief Jason Oliver Nixon is now the creative director of OK! magazine, the masthead rumba has not translated to better sales. The issue that hit last week sold an estimated 310,000 copies, down drastically from a year ago, when it sold 500,000 to 700,000 copies a week. [NYP]

• The New Haven Advocate hired Indian freelance journalists to write their paper this week — just to prove how outsourcing journalism is a huge pain in the ass. The best part: Outsourced material had a “Made in India” stamp on the page. [New Haven Advocate]

• The Associated Press is quietly offering buyouts to several hundred veteran employees, according to the AP and a News Media Guild statement. The buyout includes a $500 cash payment for each year of service with the AP and a pension payout that is 14 percent to 16 percent above the amount the employee would ordinarily receive. [Mediaweek]

Boston Globe Still Alive, Struggling