The Guardian jumps on the anti-strike bandwagon along with the BBC

A picture of a strike rally and the Guardian logo
Support us and go ad-free

After the BBC caused uproar for publishing a fake story about the impact of worker strikes, now the Guardian has joined in the anti-union propaganda.

BBC: punching down against striking workers

As the Canary previously reported, BBC News recently published an article on the National Union of Rail, Transport and Maritime Workers (RMT) industrial action on the rail network. The piece was about how ‘ordinary’ people were affected by the RMT strikes across Christmas. However, one of the stories BBC News included in the original article wasn’t true. A guy called Owen claimed he would not be able to see his son over Christmas due to the strikes. BBC News wrote:

Having supported strikes earlier in the year, Owen says he’s now against them due to the festive strikes “ruining” his Christmas.

“I have always been a staunch socialist…but it’s been a year now,” he says. “Enough is enough.”

However, Owen’s claim that no trains meant no visit to his son was incorrect – because he could get a bus on the day in question. BBC News had to remove Owen’s story from its article. As the Canary wrote:

The basic level of fact checking by the BBC is dire. Then, there’s the issue that [the] article originally only had comment from people who didn’t support the strikes – zero balance from a public service broadcaster. Plus, there’s the fact that the article got past editors in the first place…

However, the larger problem here is that this is typical BBC establishment punching down – pitting citizen against citizen while absolving those in power of responsibility.

Read on...

You’d be forgiven for thinking the Guardian would do better than this. Well, no – it hasn’t.

The Guardian: shaming itself

First, the supposedly left-wing outlet has put a call-out for stories on its website. It was around the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) Union Border Force strikes happening over Christmas. The Guardian tweeted:

It said on its website:

Suella Braverman, the home secretary, has urged people to “think carefully” about their Christmas holiday plans because travel will be disrupted by the Border Force strikes.

We would like to hear from people who have cancelled their Christmas holidays or travel plans because of the strikes this winter. How will your plans be affected?

However, it’s not the first time the Guardian has run content like this recently. On 8 December, it published a call out for hospitality bosses to tell their stories about strikes impacting their industry – similar to another BBC article. Plus, in a typically Guardian-esque move, the piece also asked to hear from workers:

As a wave of strikes hits the UK this winter, we would like to hear from hospitality owners and workers about how this will affect your business over the Christmas period. Have Christmas party reservations been cancelled due to strikes? Tell us your experiences using the form below.

Like over-worked, under-paid hospitality staff should be siding with the boss-class over other, striking, workers.

When it comes to the BBC, it will naturally use the argument of balance for why it published it’s anti-strike article. However, this shouldn’t be the case for the Guardian. It is a private publication which is supposed to be left-wing. Guardian editors surely must know better than to put out content that is divisive and playing into government agendas. It could have just not run the story. However, with the Labour Party also treading a similar anti-striking worker path – it’s predictable Guardian would follow.

Featured image via Agence France-Presse (AFP) and the Guardian – screengrab 

We know everyone is suffering under the Tories - but the Canary is a vital weapon in our fight back, and we need your support

The Canary Workers’ Co-op knows life is hard. The Tories are waging a class war against us we’re all having to fight. But like trade unions and community organising, truly independent working-class media is a vital weapon in our armoury.

The Canary doesn’t have the budget of the corporate media. In fact, our income is over 1,000 times less than the Guardian’s. What we do have is a radical agenda that disrupts power and amplifies marginalised communities. But we can only do this with our readers’ support.

So please, help us continue to spread messages of resistance and hope. Even the smallest donation would mean the world to us.

Support us
  • Show Comments
    1. Journalists also have a trade union – the National Union of Journalists (NUJ). Presumably at least some Guardian hacks are members.

      Back in 2007, the NUJ called for a boycott of Israeli goods, and for sanctions to be imposed by the UK and UN. The Guardian ran a column against it, under the headline : The NUJ should focus on the issues that matter

      This image that the Guardian has of being somehow more liberal and free-thinking than the rest of the UK MSM is just that…. an image, with no real substance.

    Leave a Reply

    Join the conversation

    Please read our comment moderation policy here.