Faculty Publications

Title

The 1997 United Parcel Service Strike: Framing the story for popular consumption

Document Type

Article

Keywords

Consumerism, Framing, Labor, News, Social activism

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of Communication Inquiry

Volume

27

Issue

2

First Page

190

Last Page

210

Abstract

The United Parcel Service (UPS) strike of August 1997 is now commonly cited as labor's greatest success of the 1990s, when 185,000 Teamster workers brought the nation's largest parcel delivery service to a standstill and won most of their demands. Despite the fact that millions of consumers in the United States were touched by inconveniences, the majority of citizens supported the striking workers. Also surprising, many mainstream news media dropped their typical consumer-oriented frames for telling stories about labor and instead presented a range of opinions about the status of part-time workers in the American economy, the years of downsizing at U.S. corporations, and the question of fair wages. This critical case study analyzes news frames of national television and print reports and discusses the factors behind such unusual coverage. © 2003 Sage Publications.

Original Publication Date

12-1-2003

DOI of published version

10.1177/0196859902250867

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