Monday 25 April 2011

Roy the rover returns: Greenslade rejoins NUJ

MediaGuardian commentator Roy Greenslade (top) announces today that he is rejoining the NUJ in a flattering profile of the union's new general secretary elect Michelle Stanistreet.

He writes in Media Guardian of Stanistreet: "Her down-to-earth, apolitical approach was widely admired, a major reason why she has walked into the job of general secretary.

"She charmed me too. In October 2007, I resigned from the NUJ after 43 years of membership because I thought the union had responded negatively to the advance of digital media. Stanistreet doesn't mention that fact until we rise from the table after our talk. As a parting shot she says: 'Why don't you come back? Come on, you know you want to.'

"So, dear readers, I agreed. I have decided to return to the NUJ fold. The new general secretary has secured her first recruit."

Greenslade, a professor of journalism at City University and former editor of the Daily Mirror, announced he was quitting the NUJ in 2007 because of what he perceived as its outdated approach to new media.

He wrote on his blog: "I think it would be hypocritical to remain inside when I am now so opposed to the union's central aims.

"I do believe, most sincerely, that journalism matters. I also think the act of journalism matters. But the brave new world opened up by the internet makes protectionist organised labour on the lines of the NUJ outdated."

The catalyst to his resignation was widespread and hostile comments from the new media camp to an article in the NUJ magazine, The Journalist, entitled 'Web 2.0 is Rubbish', by Donnacha Delong, then new media representative for the NUJ, which raised concerns that traditional journalistic content and skills was under threat from user-generated content and the internet.

Delong is now the NUJ's vice-president.

Pic: Jon Slattery

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oi, I've just seen this. Actually, Roy didn't resign over my piece specifically, he had an issue with the union trying to fight to keep jobs in the media. My piece was part of an issue of the Journalist previewing what was going to be in the Shaping the Future report, with which Roy had a bigger issue.

And I'm now President.