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Bissinger Drops The Pimp Hand

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Fenian_Bastard, Jan 5, 2007.

  1. http://www.phawker.com/?p=1262

  2. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    This was on another thread, but I can't resist it again.

    While it's easy to sympathize with Bissinger's point of view, to do so is ethically cloudy and strange to say the least.

    Management is cutting jobs. Why shift to blame to labor, even if to the highest paid laborers?

    SAS is not obligated, by union contract or any code of ethics I can think of, to turn over his job for someone else. In fact, if he did quit, who is to say management wouldn't just absorb his salary into the profit margin?

    Strange, strange outlook.
  3. FishHack76

    FishHack76 Active Member

    I agree that Steven A. should probably leave ... I mean leave altogether
  4. broadway joe

    broadway joe Guest

    Exactly right. Incredibly naive position that Bissinger is taking, as though if not for the high salaries of Stephen A and the other guy, the Inquirer wouldn't be laying off the 68 employees. What a crock, not to mention how irresponsible it is to paint these two guys as the villains here.
  5. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    It also assumes that management HAD to cut jobs.

    Which, in this business, where papers with 20 percent profit margins get hacked to bits, just isn't true.
  6. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member

    Bissenger is spot on. Neither need the job, neither has the job as their priority, and by taking two of the layoffs - they'd never be two of the people asked to walk - they're saving someone else's job. Maybe a few more than two. I think that's the basic argument here.

    Again, I've said many times: If I were a publisher, I'd let my cream folks know that I'm happy they've landed their TV gigs and wish them well. But they're gone. See, that deepens the choice a little bit. Newspapers let their best have a little too much of both worlds. Imagine if the Washington Post suddenly said "see ya Dana" or New York Times did the same to Thomas Friedman. It'd be interesting to see how long they'd last without the title behind their name.

    When the mediums stop bleeding into one another, in fact, everybody does better work.
  7. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I'm with Alma.
  8. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    Alma --

    As I've already pointed out, though, that assumes that every publisher is benovolent and makes job cuts only as a last resort.

    And we know that not to be the case. I'm not fan of SAS, but if he quits and the owners just apply that money to the margin and don't hire another columnist, no one benefits.
  9. broadway joe

    broadway joe Guest

    Obviously the Inquirer feels the paper is getting a reasonable return on their investment in the two writers, or they wouldn't have to resign because they'd already have been canned, especially if times are so tight that the paper is laying people off. The Inqurer may feel that that Stephen A's ESPN exposure benefits the paper, for instance. And as Zeke said, why ask two members of the labor force to give up their jobs to save others? Why not ask the publisher or other members of management to take pay cuts? Wouldn't that be just as reasonable, if not more so? The issue of writers serving more than one master is a separate one, I think. The question here is why two employees should be singled out to save the jobs of other employees.
  10. novelist_wannabe

    novelist_wannabe Well-Known Member

    What Bissinger is saying is, if you win the lottery, you owe it to your fellow man not to occupy a job from which someone less fortunate would draw greater benefit. I have no problem with that.
  11. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    Well, within the bubble he has constructed where apparently no one acts but for the greatest benefit for for the greatest number, I guess I would agree. Of course, they debunk the thoery of general utility on the first day of ethics class, but that's beside the point.

    In the real world, why would you hold labor to a higher standard than management?
  12. broadway joe

    broadway joe Guest

    If someone could show that:

    1. the Inquirer has no financial choice but to make these layoffs
    2. these two guys are the highest salaried people at the paper
    3. the money these two guys would be giving up would be directly applied to saving the jobs of those laid off

    then Bissinger might have a case. Otherwise, these two writers owe it to no one to give up positions they have earned and for which their employees find them worthy.
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