Motions to the Branch

30th March, 2010

The following motions will be put to the branch meeting on the 30th of March:

English Defence League

This Branch condemns the attacks on media workers by supporters of the far right English Defence League (EDL) and other far right groups.
Racism, violence and criminal damage are the hallmarks of EDL protests across Britain. NUJ members have exposed the true nature and character of the EDL.

EDL supporters have responded by targeting media workers with intimidation, threats and violence.
This Branch agrees to supports the media campaign Expose the BNP with a donation of £20.
Proposed by Jason Parkinson.

BA Strike

This Branch supports the right to strike – a right that is enshrined by international treaties.
The 1948 International Labour Organisation’s convention on the right to organise and bargain collectively, the Council of Europe’s social charter of 1961 and the 1966 UN covenant on economic, social and cultural rights all support this right.

This Branch agrees to send a message of support to Unite British Airways cabin crews who are taking industrial action to defend their jobs and conditions against a bullying and anti-union management.
Proposed by John Harris.

Digital Economy Bill

This Branch backs the Stop 43 campaign to knock Clause 43 out of the Digital Economy Bill, condemns this government’s attempt, in its last days, to force this highly controversial measure through the House of Commons without any debate, and calls on the next to introduce Moral Rights in full for all creators.
Proposed by Andrew Wiard

The Journalist Magazine.

This branch congratulates the new editor of The Journalist on her appointment but views with concern her sourcing of images from businesses such as Getty and iStock whose practices work against the interest of all photographers and in particular the interests of NUJ photographers.

This branch calls on the editor to meet with representatives of the London Photographers’ Branch at the earliest opportunity to discuss how the Journalist can develop a policy for the use of photographs that recognises the skill, experience and talents of NUJ members and is more supportive towards them.
Proposed by David Hoffman.

The Guardian

This Branch notes the difficult trading conditions The Guardian and we all face. We also note that the timely sale of 49.9% of TMG not only showed foresight of these difficult trading conditions and helped boosted the groups profits before tax from £97.7m (2007) to £306.4m (2008) but also that the GMG chair in the 2009 Annual report pointed to the “many other positives: we have net cash rather than net debt; we have a number of sound long-term investments; our businesses continue to be bold and innovative; our people are among the very best in the industry; and the Guardian’s superb journalism is reaching an expanding global audience through the growth of its website”.

Further we note that the subsequent 2009 loss of £89.8m according to the Chair “only gives only a partial view of our financial position and health..” the loss being made up entirely of losses on forward exchange contracts, on interest rate swaps and debt, and impairment of goodwill and intangibles.

We also note that the paper has already achieved very great cost savings through the cheap subscription deals offered by a some of the larger agencies e.g. Getty and Alamy.

However, it is a misnomer to describe the pictures sourced from individual freelances and the smaller agencies and picture libraries as “stock” in that these pictures are typically not ubiquitous generalisable commodity pictures but real, recent and relevant to the issues of the day with which the paper is concerned and are therefore precisely the diverse and original content that helps distinguish The Guardian from the competition. This content is crucial if the company is to realise its expressed aim of becoming “the world voice of liberal public opinion”. To this end we would ask that no such cuts in reproduction or commission fees are made.
Proposed by John Harris.

Any further motions to the branch should be sent to the Branch secretary prior to the meeting.

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