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Steve Adler's vision for Reuters

As Reuters unit chair for the NewsGuild of New York, I sent the following message to editor-in-chief Steve Adler on Friday 5 October in response to his note on planning for Reuters future.

I include his brief response from Monday 8 October, below.

Time will tell as to how we will proceed.


I read with interest your note of Wednesday, Oct. 3, on Planning for Reuters future. I want you to know that the Reuters unit of the NewsGuild of New York is a willing partner with your management team as we strive to meet the challenges ahead.

Late next month we will mark nearly a year since we completed negotiations on a contract that went on far too long and were far too acrimonious. This summer, it required your intervention to put that contract into full effect, and it will remain in place until December of 2020.

I sincerely hope that management and the Guild can move beyond the less-than-ideal atmosphere surrounding implementation of the contract and work in harmony for the overall benefit of Reuters as we embark on our post-F&R path. Toward that end, the Guild recently proposed convening the Guild-Management Partnership Committee to discuss several issues that the Guild regards as important. I will speak soon with Tiffany Wu about arranging such a meeting and I trust it will make a positive contribution.

You wrote in your note that to achieve our goals, we must “hone a culture that embraces constructive change and recognizes that standing still means falling backwards. As a practical matter, we will need to be less wedded to old silos and traditional working patterns.”

You also wrote of the need for “organizational, geographic, workflow and cultural changes, all intended to make us faster, smarter, more flexible and more effective.”

I’d like to understand more specifically what these changes mean and how you envision implementing them. I hope we can schedule a time soon to discuss this, and I will be happy to share with Guild employees any further information you might be able to provide.

I am confident that our Guild-represented journalists, videographers, photographers and others are fully capable of embracing that “constructive change” and adapting to the new challenges ahead. At the same time, I also believe that the recently implemented Collective Bargaining Agreement that governs the day-to-day working relationship between management and Guild staff can and must continue to guide us during this process.

I would hope that the oft-stated desire on the part of both the Guild and management for a positive partnership can contribute to a strong future for Reuters.

For the Guild and its members,

Dan Grebler, Unit Chair

NewsGuild of New York

Dan - Thanks for reaching out. I share your desire for a good partnership going forward. We are still early in the process of considering what kinds of changes will be most helpful, and I look forward to sharing thoughts and plans as they take shape. Best, Steve ■