×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Onion, A.V. Club, Clickhole Unionize With Writers Guild of America

The editorial and video staffs at the Onion, A.V. Club and Clickhole have unionized with the Writers Guild of America  East.

The guild announced Thursday that “an  overwhelming majority” of the staff, comprised of about 100 employees, have signed union cards and called on management to voluntarily recognize the WGA East as the collective bargaining representative.

Onion Inc., which operates the satirical sites the Onion and Clickhole and the cultural site, is part of the Fusion Media Group. The WGA East currently represents editorial and video staffs at the Fusion owned Gizmodo Media Group, which includes sites Splinter News, the Root, Lifehacker, Gizmodo, Jezebel, Deadspin, Kotaku, io9, Jalopnik and Earther.

“We are dedicated to providing an environment where all our employees can thrive and we respect their right to unionize,” a spokesperson for the Onion Inc. said. “We have begun having discussions with the WGAE about the path forward and hope to arrive at an arrangement in short order.”

In 2011, comedy/variety writers for The Onion’s satirical television news show, “Onion News Network,” joined the WGA East. The show aired for two seasons on IFC.

The WGA East has been active in organizing digital news sites for the past three years and now reps about 1,000 members in that area, including Vice, HuffPost, the Intercept, Gizmodo Media Group (Splinter, Gizmodo, Jezebel, Deadspin, the Root, Lifehacker, Kotaku, io9, Jalopnik, Earther), ThinkProgress, MTV News, Thrillist, and Salon. In January, Vox Media agreed to recognize the guild as the collective bargaining representative of approximately 400 employees.

Lowell Peterson, executive director of the WGA East, said, “We welcome the editorial and production employees at Onion, Inc. to the movement for collective bargaining in digital media. Working together, we can build power and make concrete gains in the workplace as we have at GMG and across the digital media landscape.”

The Onion Inc. Organizing Committee issued a statement saying, “Onion Inc. is unionizing with the Writers Guild of America, East. By organizing, we intend to protect the culture and values that make Onion Inc. a singularly great place to work and establish a formal means by which the employees have a collective and meaningful voice in our workplace. We’ve seen the positive effects of unions across digital media newsrooms, especially at our Gizmodo Media Group sister sites, and believe Onion Inc. will similarly benefit.”

“As we continue to work with Univision and Fusion Media Group, we are unionizing to establish transparency and open communication around the high-level decisions being made that affect Onion Inc.,” the statement continued. “A union will ensure that Onion Inc. remains a place that attracts and retains talented people, upholds opportunities for professional growth, and continues to be the most widely read, most lucrative, and most respected media company that has ever existed in the history of the written word.”

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Disney-Plus-mobile-app

    Disney Plus Hits Estimated 3.2 Million App Downloads on Launch Day

    Disney Plus had a booming — and technically problematic — coming-out party. In the first 24 hours after its official Nov. 12 launch, the Disney Plus mobile app was downloaded 3.2 million times, according to research firm Apptopia. About 89% of the downloads were in the U.S., with 9% in Canada and 2% in the Netherlands [...]

  • CBSN New York

    Pluto TV Adds Three Free CBS Interactive Channels Ahead of ViacomCBS Official Deal Close

    As Viacom and CBS near the finish line on consummating their merger, Viacom’s Pluto TV is getting additional live programming from CBS Interactive to plug into its free, ad-supported streaming service. Pluto TV, which Viacom acquired in January, already has offered channels for CBS Interactive’s CBSN national news service and CNET tech-news brand. Starting today, [...]

  • Tencent Music presentation at Shanghai

    Paying Users Push Tencent Music to Greater Q3 Growth

    Tencent Music Entertainment (TME), one of China’s biggest online music entertainment platforms, saw better than expected revenue growth in its third quarter thanks to a rise in paywalls and paying users. Announced on Monday, revenue beat analyst estimates by growing 31% to $910 million (RMB6.51 billion) for the quarter ending Sept. 30, up from RMB4.97 [...]

  • knives Out

    ‘Knives Out’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the always-on TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Lionsgate claims the top spot in spending with “Knives Out.” Ads placed for the drama had an estimated media value of $6.23 million through Sunday for 514 national ad airings on 28 networks. (Spend [...]

  • Disney-Plus-Logo

    Disney Plus Launch Snafus: What Went Wrong?

    For some users, Disney Plus was a Disney Minus on its big launch day Tuesday. In its Nov. 12 debut, the service was beset by multiple problems, including Disney Plus customers being unable to log in to the service, access specific content, or use certain streaming devices — while some who called Disney’s customer service [...]

  • YouTube Taps Shana Tepper as Head

    YouTube Taps Shana Tepper as Head of Entertainment Communications

    YouTube has tapped Shana Tepper as its head of entertainment communications. In her new role, Tepper will lead all press and communications strategies for YouTube Originals series and specials focused on personalities, artists and learning. Tepper joins YouTube from Viacom, where she most recently served as vice president of communications for Comedy Central and Paramount [...]

  • Richard Plepler HBO

    Former HBO Chief Richard Plepler Close to Signing Apple TV Plus Production Pact

    Former HBO chief Richard Plepler is close to signing an exclusive production pact with Apple TV Plus. Apple declined to comment and Plepler could not immediately be reached for comment. It’s understood that Plepler plans to launch a boutique production company designed to focus on a handful of high-profile projects. Among his advisors in pulling [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content