Friday, January 15, 2016

Friday Delivery

I want to explain why I'm so late recently regarding the posts. 

I used to wake up around 4 a.m. and work on the blog for two hours before going to get a Globe. Well, I'm no longer doing that. I see the clock saying 4 a.m. and I'm rolling over now. Sleep is more important. I've denied myself enough of that over the years. 

Never fear. I startle awake just after 6 and scream "Globe." Then it is warm up the car and off for coffee. Globe is a lucky straggler by force of habit. 

Anyway, it takes me about 2 to 2-1/2 hours to read the thing, depending on the amount of pages and pertinent stories. By that time I am heading towards 9 and have yet to even start.

I then turn to delusion and denial by cleaning up drafts and planning projects. That takes up nearly the whole morning, and as noon approaches I haven't prepared any blogs for post. 

That leaves me about an hour, maybe two, if I want to continue working (and deny myself food until the evening), and most of what I'm churning out is crap in my eyes. It's so far afield from what my focus was when I first started. 

Then, for health reasons among others, I shut the blog down by 2 p.m. I've simply drawn a line. There will be no more evening and late night blogging, period. I'm not going to neglect my entire existence for this thing as I have been, not when the Globe is troweling garbage these days. Offen$ive, in$ulting garbage.

Anyhow, here is what I'm leaving on your doorstep for starters:

"Investigate the newspaper delivery industry" by The Editorial Board   January 13, 2016

My first reaction was yeah, okay, what is the Globe waiting for? 

Isn't that what they do? 

Investigative journalism? 

I mean, I was told it is award-winning stuff.

Second reaction: they just spent the last couple weeks doing that, haven't they?

The once-obscure world of newspaper delivery burst into view this month as the result of the Globe’s messy transition from its previous distributor, Publishers Circulation Fulfillment Inc., to a new vendor, ACI Media Group.

Yes, it's been the top story on my blog here.

Thousands of subscribers stopped receiving papers at their doorsteps because the new company didn’t have enough drivers to cover all its delivery routes. One reason they didn’t have enough drivers was because ACI set up contorted routes, meaning it took drivers longer to deliver the same number of papers. Many concluded that it simply wasn’t worth it.

It's the same old set of stale excuses.

And who can blame them? Drivers get no vacation, and lack worker protections. That’s despite the fact that packaging papers into plastic bags, in the middle of the night, can be grueling work. 

Yeah, the Globe sent some people down there to help out, didn't you see?

The Globe, like the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and other newspapers, outsources its deliveries to companies that, in turn, hire the carriers as independent contractors. But some drivers, including the North Shore deliverers who walked out Sunday, contend they should be classified as employees, which would make them subject to minimum wage laws and other worker protections.

It should be noted that the Globe’s current owner and publisher, John W. Henry, inherited that arrangement from its previous owner, the New York Times, and that it’s the same distribution model that most large newspapers have used since paperboys and paper girls passed into memory. The Globe does not hire carriers directly.

Look at the Globe -- the ba$tion of corporate liberali$m -- trotting out the "everybody does it this way excuse" for not knowing what is going on with its own business practices.

We just have some labor-staffing company sorting out deliveries. We don't really know what goes on over there. 

How can anyone take anything they say in their paper seriously anymore? 

And who do they say should be doing the investigating?

Attorney General Maura Healey and federal labor authorities should take an independent look at the newspaper distribution industry — in this region, and nationwide. If the way the Globe and other papers are distributed runs afoul of state or federal labor laws, distributors must change their employment practices.

And lose the "fruits of cheap labor" that benefit us all?

(Marcela García is a Globe editorial writer)

I wonder if they wrote this.

Yeah, save me the $ob $tory, 'kay?

In recent years, courts have sent mixed messages: the Orange County Register reached a settlement with carriers, but a Massachusetts case related to the Athol Daily News upheld the legality of the independent contractor model. In 2009, PCF settled a lawsuit for $1.4 million and agreed to end some labor practices, like docking the pay of workers if subscribers reported that their newspapers were wet.

Mixed messages, huh? 

Then the newspaper deliverers understand exactly how I feel, even if they aren't reading a Globe. It's full of them, every day, day after day.

The delivery woes that the Globe has experienced during its transition to a new delivery company have been jarring — late papers, misplaced papers, and papers that haven’t been delivered at all.

Oh, woe is them! 


But the labor practices need to be scrutinized by an outside investigator — with an eye toward building in basic protections for the workforce that puts newspapers on doorsteps seven days a week.

Yeah, someone else needs to investigate. Not the Globe.


Related: Sunday Globe Delivered

I might not buy it this week. 

For $ome rea$on, the Globe is leaving me unfulfilled $ince John Henry took over.