I am rarely surprised at something that has to do with the workplace in Greece, where exploitation and the abolition of fundamental labor rights tend to become characteristic of the country.
However, in this post I will refer to an incident that I have not heard before.
It’s about a 28 year old young journalist, with dreams and passion for work, who, in his attempt to show how much he loves journalism, has decided to work once again (he has done it in the past for another media) without money for six months. So he worked hoping that his employers would soon understand his love for this job and hire him.
But before I go on with the story I would like to make a point. In Greece, it is self-understood for many years that young people who want to get involved in journalism, have to work for a long time without money and with exhausting hours, without days off, public holidays and, of course, weekends.
So, when the six months passed, he contacted his employers to find out whether or not to be hired. The boss, after telling him how good he is in his job, decided to hire him for 15 days(!) Yes, you read well. The young journalist was forced to sign a fifteen-day contract, and then he would still be unemployed. After him, the media he worked for, would find another ambitious newcomer, with a dream of challenging career in journalism and force him to work without a salary with the promise that if he/she is good at his job, he/she will be hired.
I’ve recently read an article by a veteran Greek journalist explaining that there is no journalism in Greece now. And I totally agree. The publishers are controlled by their sponsors who are shipowners or entrepreneurs, so the greek media have become a means of propaganda.
Anyone who is a friend, cousin or has any close relationship with the "publisher" or the financier of the media, gets a good job, without necessarily being a journalist. He may be theologian, archaeologist, physicist, even electrician! And because everything is allowed in Greece, there are people who work as journalists having only the high school diploma.
If , however, a person with studies in journalism and passion for work is found, like the young man I mentioned above, then the Greek “publishers” will exploit him in the worst and most humiliating way because he did not happen to be in his narrow social circle.
Applying such embarrassing tactics, some still boast of practicing journalism in Greece. It is not just a country that is sinking more and more into the recession. Everything around is collapsing with the culmination of the labor rights that not only do not exist, but if an employee dares to defend himself, he will be fired. Certainly there are other branches in our country that are hit but the big party is in the media. And when my friends abroad ask me which Greek media is trustworthy, I have nothing to answer them. Unfortunately.