Bustle Digital Group has voluntarily recognized the Writers Guild of America East for the purpose of collective bargaining after an “overwhelming” majority of employees in that unit signed authorization cards.
BDG’s bargaining unit will include approximately 200 editorial, video, design and social staffers from Bustle, Elite Daily, Input, Inverse, Mic, Nylon, Romper and The Zoe Report.
The move is the latest in a long line of unionization victories for the WGA East, which has added thousands of members in recent years by organizing New York-based digital sites such as The Dodo, Fast Company, Gimlet Media, Hearst Magazines, HuffPost, The Intercept, Jewish Currents, MTV News, Parcast, Refinery29, The Ringer, Salon, Slate, Talking Points Memo, Thrillist, Vice and Vox Media. The WGA East has more than 7,000 members.
Lowell Peterson, executive director of the WGA East, said, “We welcome Bustle Digital Group employees to the Writers Guild of America East. Like thousands of their colleagues in the industry, they recognize the value and power of collective bargaining. Together, we can ensure that their voices are heard about the vital issues affecting their work and their workplace.”
Bryan Goldberg, CEO and founder of BDG, said, “We respect the decision by some of our editorial, design, and video employees to be represented by the Writers Guild of America East for collective bargaining, and we quickly voluntarily recognized the union. We look forward to a productive and mutually respectful dialogue with the WGAE as we work through this process.”
The BDG Organizing Committee sent a statement to BDG management which said, “We are proud of creating work that is intentionally inclusive, creative, and empowering. Unionizing will allow us to more fully live out these values. Considering the momentous changes that are routine in our industry and the unique challenges of the past year, we feel now is the time to join our industry peers and organize in the hopes of forming a more equitable workplace. We love our work at BDG, and we are organizing to make it even better.”