The Boston Glob Guild rejected The New York Times Company’s cutbacks. What the Guild should have done, I say, is reject The New York Times Company’s strategy.
Rather than nickel-and-diming-and-dollaring their way to survival through cutbacks (though I wonder how saving $20 million when you’re losing $85 million can possibly do the job; it’s a Band-Aid on a gushing artery) the Globe should find its alternate future not as a newspaper but as a journalistic service online.
The Guild should have demanded a strategy that transforms the Globe into a smaller but profitable venture that concentrates only on news and serving the community and not on printing and distribution, jettisoning huge costs but coming out with a sustainable plan.
But the union’s not going to think that way anymore than management is. They are, as this process all too painfully demonstrates, retrenched in their past, in their long-held definitions of their business and themselves.
So the possible futures do not look good: The Globe could die soon. The losses at the Globe could bring down The New York Times. Someone else could come in town imminently and create that nimble new news organization and kill the Globe.