The Atlantic’s business and tech teams won formal recognition of their union on Friday, after a card count confirmed supermajority support. The workers announced their intent to unionize back in July with the New York NewsGuild, joining their editorial colleagues at The Atlantic, who unionized nearly a year earlier in June of 2021.
The Atlantic Union: Business & Technology is the latest sign of growing support for unions among both tech and administrative workers in the media industry. Over 500 New York Times tech workers voted to unionize earlier this year, also with the New York NewsGuild.
The 100-person unit covers workers overseeing huge revenue-boosting departments such as tech infrastructure and business operations of The Atlantic, including data scientists, analysts, software engineers, product managers, project managers, assistants, designers, and the in-house creative studio, Workers in the union are calling for more equity and diversity in the workplace, fair compensation, and meaningful professional development and growth opportunities for employees, particularly junior staff.
“I’m thrilled that with the certification of our union, the business and technology teams will have the opportunity to join our editorial colleagues at the bargaining table with management,” said Associate Producer Kim Walker.
Workers are also calling for a stronger say in the company’s digital growth and revenue strategy. The Atlantic launched a paywall in 2019 as it works to grow its digital audience and consumer revenue and has partnered with major corporations for sponsored ads on the site. Workers want to help shape efforts to grow the digital future of the magazine, particularly the advertisers they work with. Workers are also looking for more of a say in The Atlantic’s organization chart as the company continues to evolve and expand its team, particularly its product engineering unit.
“Our union will ensure that those doing the work to produce The Atlantic will be part of informing its bright future,” said Product Designer Han Castanedo, Product Designer. “I am looking forward to helping create the inclusive and equitable workplace that lives up to the mission we all care deeply about.”
“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome the Atlantic Business and Technology teams to our growing Guild ranks, joining their editorial colleagues who are currently bargaining their first contract. The Atlantic has been an steadfast voice in journalism, and now workers from all over the company will have a say in its future” said Susan DeCarava, president of The NewsGuild of New York. “We are pleased the company ultimately agreed to a swift path to voluntary recognition, and are eager to begin negotiations as soon as possible.”