British newspaper journalism 1900 to 1956 : a study of industrial relations
The newspaper journalist has an important part to play in modern
society. One of the influences bearing upon the effectiveness with
which he plays his part is his economic relationship with his employer,
the newspaper proprietor.
An analysis is made of the British newspaper industry's current
problems, with a brief economic history of the industry since 1850, as
a background against which this relationship must be Tiewed. The
characteristics of the industry and of journalists as employees are
The trade associations concerned in this relationship are described,
with a history of their development since their beginnings in the 19th and
early 20th centuries. federations on the employers' and the employees'
sides are mentioned and" the Joint Industrial Council.
The rivalry between the Institute of Journalists and the National
Union of Journalists is recounted, including efforts at amalgamation and
current disagreements, such as the 'closed shop' and affiliation with
The sources of income of newspaper journalists are investigated and this income compared with that of the members of certain other
locations, crafts and professions. An account is given of wage rates
and wage negotiations fro~ 1900 to the present day; and of the recognition,
by the proprietorial organisations, of the Institute of Journalists and
the National Union of Journalists.
The main disputes and negotiations during this period, other than
those concerned with wages, are also described, with reference to hours,
holidays, sick pay, pensions, unemployment, apprentice agreements and
restriction of entry. Mention 1s made of the General Strike (1926)
and the Royal commission on the Press (1947 to 1949).
An evaluation is attempted of the journalist's economic progress
since the beginning of the century; of his status in the community and
in the newspaper industry; and of the problems facing him and his
employers in the immediate future.