Vox Media has voted to unionize with the Writers Guild of America, East, the union announced in a statement on Thursday.
“Through voluntary recognition, Vox Media has joined the growing ranks of digital media companies that understand the necessity of unions to secure basic protections for those of us who work in an always-evolving industry,” Vox Media Union Organizing Committee said. “A union will give us the means to maintain what we love about working for this company, and to have a collective voice when we address anything that may change.”
The move is a win for pro-union media efforts and will affect roughly 400 employees across Vox Media’s eight verticals.
Vox’s unionizing has been a long time coming. Last month, Vox Media employees wrote in an open letter that they intended to organize.
“A union will offer a company of far-flung co-workers a robust sense of community and nurture a culture of respect. An organized workforce provides support for each employee, and any one of us in need should feel empowered by the rest of us,” they wrote, before listing a list of more specific demands.
In addition to Vox, WGA East also represents employees from media companies including VICE, HuffPost, The Intercept, Gizmodo Media Group, ThinkProgress, MTV News, Thrillist and Salon.
Overall, it’s been a mixed bag for union organizing in media companies. In 2017, local New York City staples Gothamist and DNAinfo were shut down by their billionaire owner Joe Ricketts after they voted to unionize. The move by Ricketts — a famously anti-union conservative — was widely viewed as retributive. More than 100 journalists were ultimately laid off.