Company's news and feature magazine wins a prestigious Maggie for an article about IBM's employment and compensation policies.
MC Systems Insight, the online magazine published by MC Press Online targeting IBM technology professionals, has been named a Maggie Award winner by the Western Publishing Association.
MC Systems Insight was presented the award at the 59th Annual Maggie Awards ceremony held earlier this month at Los Angeles' Sheraton Gateway. The publication won the "Best Web or Digital Edition Article/Trade" category for the feature article titled "IBM Layoffs and Compensation Raise Disturbing Questions About Corporate Ethics." It is the first time that an MC Press Online publication has won a Maggie, one of the publishing industry's most prestigious honors.
The article that secured MC Systems Insight's place among the winning entries was written by Senior News Editor Chris Smith, who accepted the award during the ceremony on behalf of the company. His widely read article questioned the ethics of secrecy behind mass IBM layoffs taking place last year and received tremendous attention and feedback from both journalism colleagues and readers. The article has received more Web hits than any other MC Press Online article in recent history. In addition, the article has been picked up and featured in forums in the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, and numerous other consumer publications.
In the article, Smith addresses the then-climbing national unemployment rate as well as the layoffs at IBM despite an upswing in income and revenue at the company during the prior year. He also questions the growing trend of off-shore corporate employment, including information about IBM's Patent Office application for an outsourcing system with an objective of "50 percent of resources in China by 2010," a story that originally broke in the Middletown, New York, Times Herald-Record. While large corporations don't always announce layoffs, Smith argued that significant layoffs are generally revealed to the public as a social responsibility and an attempt to ease the trauma inflicted by the loss of countless jobs. By withholding information about the number of layoffs, IBM was sending a difficult and painful message to its former employees. Smith writes: "The message is: suck it up, the company is doing fine, you're being laid off because you weren't as good as the workers we chose to keep."
"Winning a Maggie is a tremendous honor for MC Press Online and is a long-overdue recognition for the hard work and expert talent displayed on a regular basis by the editorial team," said Publisher David Uptmor. The company, born from the now-defunct Midrange Computing, publishes four high-tech online publications in addition to MC Systems Insight, including MC iApplication Designer, MC RPG Developer, MC iTechnology Manager, and MC TNT Tips 'N Techniques.
Smith noted that the article really took off after several months of being online and received an unexpected amount of attention from readers and fellow journalists. "With the national unemployment rate still hovering at just under 10 percent, it's no surprise this article really struck a chord with readers, as so many are seeing their friends and family suffering from the blow of losing their livelihoods," said Smith.
"It's concerning to everyone how many big corporations are outsourcing American jobs overseas, where lower-paid foreign labor is their
key to success," he said. "Stockholders and company executives at IBM continue to reap the rewards of high profits, while former employees—who helped bring the company to its present level of success through extraordinary hard work and dedication—are out of jobs."
MC Press Online Senior News Editor Chris Smith, author of winning article.
While this is the first Maggie for MC Press Online, it is the second for Smith, who was honored with a Maggie two decades ago for his work as editor of a cable television trade magazine.
MC Press Online Executive Editor Victoria Mack said she was thrilled by winning the competition and added, "After eight years of publishing many excellent articles from authors throughout the IBM midrange industry, I'm delighted that MC Systems Insight is being recognized for the superior publication that it is."
Western Publishing Association (WPA) Maggie Awards are among the most prestigious publication awards in the United States, honoring publishing excellence for work deemed the "Best in the West." WPA's primary objective is to "promote the pursuit of excellence among publishing professionals." For more information about the Western Publishing Association and the Maggie Awards, visit www.wpa-online.org. To read the MC Press Online article that won the award, click here.