Greek journalists — all of them — go on strike

Since the Greek government undertook austerity measures to begin to deal with its cripping debt, strikes in the country have become a regular occurrence. While we over in North America are used to the idea of work stoppages in areas like education, garbage collection, postal services, and transit, the idea of the entire country’s media going on strike is a foreign one, to say the least.

But earlier this month, that’s exactly what happened. Starting April 7, the country was without news, in any form, for four days. Journalists in Greece are feeling the effects of cutbacks and layoffs in their workplaces just like the rest of their countrymen.

And while the situations aren’t parallel, journalists here have felt the same squeeze. Only, without the wall-to-wall unionization that Greek journalists have, collective action in North America is much harder to undertake. Just ask the unpaid Huffington Post writers who are trying to cobble a lawsuit together.

But will the Greeks get their way? Caught as they are in the middle of a seismic economic shift in their country, their strike is valiant but unlikely to reverse the move toward a leaner media workforce. As journalists in Canada and the U.S. have done, the Greeks too will have to do more with less. Austerity may be the guiding principle in Greece’s economy, but in the media field, it’s a global reality.

Posted on April 20, 2011 at 9:27 am by editor · · Tagged with: ,

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