New Wordle Hurdle: New York Times Guild Asks Readers Not to ‘Cross the Digital Picket Line’ on Thursday

The news guild is poised to walk out on Thursday and is asking Wordle players to “stand with us”

(Photo Illustration by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

On Wednesday, members of the New York Times Guild asked readers to “not engage in any New York Times platforms tomorrow” — including Wordle — as they prepare to walk out at midnight on Dec. 8.

“Stand with us on the digital picket line! Read local news. Listen to public radio. Pull out a cookbook. Break your Wordle streak,” the guild tweeted, with a Wordle grid that spelled out “TIMES UNION STAFF WALKS.”

The Times bought the popular online word game for an undisclosed seven-figure amount in January. A few months later, the Times announced that Wordle, which is only available to subscribers, had brought in “an unprecedented tens of millions of new users.

More than 1,000 union staffers are expected to strike for 24 hours on Thursday, something that hasn’t happened since the 1970s, according to CNN.

“We had hoped to reach a fair deal before our deadline, but more than 1,100 of us are ready to take a stand together, for each other and for journalists everywhere,” reporter Jenny Vrentas said in a statement Tuesday.

The previous contract expired in March 2021. Union members have been asking for better wages, but have not reached a satisfactory deal. On Friday, the NewsGuild informed The Times of its plans to walk out.

Employees will picket outside the newspaper’s offices.

Wednesday’s Wordle word of the day (SPOILER: It was “JOUST”) helped convey the guild’s mood on the night of the walkout.

Dozens of Wordle-inspired games have sprung up in the meantime, from the National Gallery of Art’s Artle to puzzles that let you guess movie posters (Posterdle), movie stills (Framed) and numbers (Nerdle).