Do You Hear the Interns Sing?

Well, yes, Paris is, as it were, burning — or, at least, the poor suburbs around the city are — but The Wall Street Journal, bless its capitalist heart, has found a much more pressing Parisian problem to bring to our attention.

French interns are striking.

Wearing white masks and bearing banners ("no contract, no salary, no rights"), they marched on Tuesday for steady wages and benefits in their internships, claiming companies were getting around labor laws by taking so many of them on.... A nationwide strike of interns is scheduled for November 14.

The Journal, naturally, views this job action as the Journal would: "In other words, [the interns] want a proper job, as opposed to, well, a stage, which they choose to take, presumably voluntarily." And this makes sense, of course, because we all know how often entry-level media people volunteer for unpaid internships rather than accepting all those job offers that are flying in.

And, yet, at the same time — and loath though we are to agree with the Journal on such matters — we can't help but hope this trend doesn't spread to the United States. Because while we feel interns' pain, we also have no idea how Anna Wintour — hell, how any magazine editor — would get coffee without them.

Revolt of the Interns [WSJ]