Actor Will Wheaton recently posted a piece about his anger over having been asked by HuffPo to to let them publish, for free, something he had written. Wheaton’s ire also resulted in a string of tweets, like this one: “Writers and bloggers: if you write something that an editor thinks is worth being published, you are worth being paid for it. Period.” Others responded that writing for free can mean valuable exposure. The piece linked below is from Salon, summarizing some of the debate. Essentially, the writer points out that the situation is different for different people (and yet, oddly, the author still agrees with Wheaton’s broad generalization.) >>>
LINK: Wil Wheaton is right: Stop expecting artists to work for free — or worse, for “exposure” (by Scott Timberg for Salon)
…Writers, shooters, graphic designers, musicians, and others do need to get their work, and their names, “out there” – they hear this all the time! Many run their own blogs for this very purpose. But unlike start-up types who first raise money on the basis of something they’re hoping to do, these craftspeople live off the work they produce. And they constantly, in a digital age that has already destabilized their earnings, are asked to do it for free. For a brand. For a friend. For any number of reasons, but often, the hustle is that the gratis work will serve as “free advertising” for work someone else is supposed to pay them to do, somewhere on down the road….
Compare: everyone you seen interviewed on the TV news — including professors, pundits, experts of various kinds — does that for free.
What do you think?