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Condé Nast Employees Seek Union as Media-Organising Efforts Grow

Condé Nast headquarters.
Condé Nast headquarters. (Condé Nast)

More employees at magazine giant Condé Nast are seeking to unionise, part of a growing wave of organising efforts across the publishing industry.

The union campaign includes workers at titles like GQ, Vanity Fair, Vogue, Glamour and Bon Appétit, as well as the company’s entertainment studio. Other Condé Nast magazines, including the New Yorker and Wired, have already formed unions that were recognised by the company.

Condé Nast employees say the new organising effort was sparked by internal tensions that date back to at least 2020, when current and former Bon Appétit workers said they had encountered racial inequality in the workplace.

The magazine company has also grappled with an industrywide decline in ad revenue, dwindling print subscriptions and job cuts. In the early days of the pandemic in May 2020, Condé Nast laid off about 100 US employees.

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In a statement, Condé Nast employees said they want the company to make a strong commitment to staff diversity, more job security, higher pay, clearer paths to job advancement and more transparency. They are seeking to join the NewsGuild, an affiliate of the Communications Workers of America that represents other Condé Nast magazines as well as staffers at the New York Times and Washington Post.

A Condé Nast spokesperson didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Union organising has grown in newsrooms in recent years, fueled by journalists seeking more racial equality and job security in an uncertain industry.

The share of workers represented by unions in industries like publishing, media and entertainment rose in 2021 from the year before, according to government data released in January.

By Gerry Smith

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