Corporate media largely ignore labor issues. let’s make them visible.

By Steve Macek and Andy Lee Roth, Truthout

A year ago, VICE’s Motherboard published an account of the underhanded tactics used by IRI Consultants, the “union avoidance” firm Google hired to prevent its employees from unionizing. The report used leaked files to show how IRI gathered private information on the personalities, work ethics, and motivations of its clients’ employees and then used that data to target individual workers in an effort to sway their votes in union elections.

While the corporate press has lately reported on the upsurge in unionization efforts by workers at Big Tech companies, it has mostly ignored how these companies regularly hire union-busting consultants to thwart those organizing efforts. Project Censored identified Motherboard’s report on Google union-busting as one of the most important but underreported news stories of 2020-2021. There has been no subsequent corporate news coverage of the sensational leaks that Motherboard released last January. The only other coverage of the Motherboard leaks was a January 8, 2021, post on the independent, grassroots labor news site Payday Report, which discussed IRI’s attempts to stop Seattle health care workers from unionizing but did not mention IRI’s work for Google.

Various corporate media logos block a series of strike signs

Corporate news media’s lack of attention to this story is symptomatic of its refusal to focus on workers, workers’ rights and the labor movement, not to mention the economic realities of social class in the U.S. The perspectives and interests of working people seldom feature in “business” news. The result is a one-sided view of work and workers.

Read More