Saturday, December 29, 2007

The end of the year and what's to come

Hey folks,

In the last few months, I've been an absolutely abysmal blogger. First, I got wrapped up in work-related stuff, then the holidays came, and, gosh, where has the time gone? As always, the union work didn't stop-- I just didn't get off my butt to post about it. And for that, please forgive me. So now, as I write from vacation, allow me a brief moment to reflect on where we've been and where we're going.

This has been a challenging year on many levels. We saw layoffs, cutbacks and underfunding and, as is always the case, were asked to do more work with less resources. With the growth of the Internet, through live posts on, blogs and increased multimedia reporting, I'd say that everyone on this staff has had to take on more work. I know I've blogged through breakfast and fallen asleep on my keyboard editing photos, and I know I'm nowhere near the hardest working among us.

With that in mind, I'm pleased to say we've risen to the challenge. From one end of the newsroom, from art to sports, we've embraced the new tasks and gotten on with things. We're still figuring out how to do it in some areas, nothing's ever as smooth as it should be, and we're still miles behind where we should be, but all-in-all, we're lookin' good.

We've seen major reorganizations in many sections and new formats for the paper and And when management needed input on how to implement that change, union members were the ones speaking up and leading the way. That's certainly not the case elsewhere in MediaNews (see this story in the Bay Area or the staff blog in Long Beach to see places where the relationship ain't so good).

The reason we're so lucky to enjoy that good relationship is you. Your continued dedication and hard work, regardless of the circumstance, allows us to keep moving ahead. Singleton and his closeminded managers elsewhere in the chain say that unions don't work because they prevent good work from being done-- this is clearly not the case at the Daily News. Here, union members consistently work the hardest and come up with the best ideas. I'm sure if the anti-union crowd looked a little harder at the other properties, they'd find the same thing.

I've been saying for a long time that we've come a long way but still have far to travel. And that's still true. It's tiring, I know. I get weary like the rest of you and hope for the day when the struggle will be over. But I don't see that ever truly coming-- we're always going to be fighting for resources and respect and 2008 will be no different. But we're well positioned for the struggles ahead and I have total confidence that we'll come out ahead. We've got the sharpest, most creative minds on our side and the most energetic bunch of journalists I know working every day to make this a better place.

I'll close now-- I ought to get off and see some sights, I suppose-- but there will be many more messages to come and plenty to do in the new year. In the meantime, thanks for everything you've done and all your positive attitudes. You're the ones that make the struggles worthwhile.

Happy New Year and Adios,