Retirement at risk for thousands of journalists

Retirement at risk for thousands of journalists

Benefits for thousands of retired Canadian newspaper workers are at risk.

Reported the Hamilton Spectator: “About 3,000 retirees of the Southam newspaper chain, including former Spectator staff, received a letter just before Christmas warning them their retirement benefits are in jeopardy. While coverage will continue “for the time being,” the retirees were warned the company that administers their plan has gone into bankruptcy protection and its assets “may not be sufficient to fund all (benefits) over the long term” so their coverage “may be altered.””

“The Southam retirement benefits plan is administered by Hollinger Canadian Publishing Holdings Company (HCPH), the Toronto-based firm that held the newspapers of disgraced media baron Conrad Black. As his empire disintegrated under the barrage of fraud and theft charges that ultimately put Black in a Florida prison, most of the Southam newspapers were sold in 2000 to Canwest Global Communications in a deal that left “legacy” costs for retirees with Hollinger.”

Bloomberg reported Dec. 10 on Ontario Superior Court Judge Colin Campbell granting Hollinger protection from creditors.

Finally someone in the mainstream media is paying attention, said former Southam journalist Brian Brennan, who previously raised the alarm ….

UPDATE: Details on the pension debacle — including historic context — are  on the web site of the Media Union of BC.

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Why do we do it?

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Michelle Lang’s death capped the “deadliest
year ever
” for media workers, according to the Committee to Protect
Journalists, with reports of deaths ranging from 68 to 130. At Berkeley campus, a panel
of American war correspondents asked the big question: why do we risk
our lives for a largely complacent public

The simple answer is, “They
risk their lives to get the truth
.” But in today’s highly managed
environment, truth is hard to come by. Even the details of Lang’s death have
been suppressed
by Canwest’s embed agreement
, according to noted American war blogger
Micheal Yon. Meanwhile, Thomas Kunkel argues that embedding puts journalists in harm’s way
like never before, with fewer truth-telling opportunities.


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Congrès FPJQ 2009 : Sortie de crise, le vidéo (2)

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* Ces vidéos ont été réalisés pour la FPJQ dans le cadre de son congrès annuel qui se tenait du 13 au 15 novembre 2009 à Sherbrooke. Vidéastes Leslie Doumrec et Émilie Fondaneche.

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Dying to tell the truth

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Cliff LonsdaleWhat is the shocked journalism community to take from the death of a young reporter who had so much to live for? Cliff Lonsdale, president of the Canadian Journalism Forum on Violence and Trauma, offers some reflections.
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Journalists mourn Michelle Lang

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A note pad and a pencil – tools of our trade –
adorned journalist Michelle Lang’s casket on Friday on the
Kandahar Airfield as it was carried to the aircraft to return to Canada.

The Calgary Herald
reporter was killed Wednesday when a landmine exploded
under the light armoured vehicle that she was riding in, along with
four Canadian soldiers…

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Lentement, le journaliste tisse son fil sur la Toile

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Le journalisme est en pleine effervescence depuis des années. On parle de changements majeurs, de virage, de mutation, de crise et même de révolution. Les « tisserands du 4e pouvoir » sont en pleine tourmente. Le débat baigne notamment dans un maelstrom métajournalistique confondant.

Dans ce tourbillon de leitmotivs émergent des tendances qui, même si elles sont parfois paradoxales, peuvent s’avérer utiles pour définir le journalisme d’aujourd’hui : surabondance de nouvelles, polarisation des thèmes, fugacité de l’information et multiplication des formats. Dans le contexte de cette (r)évolution, les uns – les journalistes – tentent d’ajuster la production de leurs contenus, alors que les autres – le public – adoptent de nouveaux comportements.
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