The News Media Guild’s nationwide protest Thursday was a resounding success. Most states had every writer participate by withholding their byline on their stories, and in the others, there was generally only a lone holdout here and there.
The story _ unbylined _ was the same across AP’s four regional editing hubs and the national verticals, from sports and business to photos and entertainment.
By a preliminary count, about 110 of 115 bureaus, plus a total of about 20 departments in Washington, D.C., and New York City, participated in the daylong protest.
Lots of nonwriting staffers proudly wore their red Guild shirts all day and took photos, and many expressed their feelings about the latest contract offers from The Associated Press with Tweets using our hashtag, #fairAPcontract.
Some of the photos are posted on our Twitter site (@NMGAP) and Facebook page (http://on.fb.me/1ec9FNc), and more will be posted soon.
Media bloggers covered the story, including a big piece on Jim Romenesko’s site (http://bit.ly/1ffgLx1) and one on Huffington Post (http://huff.to/1eknU0P).
Journalists pulled their names from major stories on the Super Bowl, President Obama, Congress & immigration reform, Ben Bernanke’s legacy (he steps down Friday), the widely used daily Wall Street story and the decision to seek the death penalty in the Boston Marathon Bombing, among other news.
The national news digests listing the day’s top stories all had only a couple domestic bylines, mostly folks who aren’t Guild members, and one of those was a misstake on a story repeated from the day before.
The South regional editor resorted to switching the writer for the Atlanta-based national weather story to a nonmember staffer in another state because every staffer in Georgia refused to put their name on it.
Some AP member newspapers called their local bureaus to ask about the missing bylines. AP simply acknowledged the contractual right of staffers to withhold their name from their work.
The two sides return to bargaining next Monday and Tuesday in New York.