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View Full Version : Depressing freelance rates online



BunnyMaz
01-16-2012, 10:04 PM
Ye gods, browsing freelance websites is depressing at the moment.

One website I frequent has a job going asking for a 200,000 word novel to be ghost written, with all research and work done by the ghost writer. The total budget offered is 500-1500 and there are over 25 bids for the job already.

I wouldn't mind, but it seems that stuff like this just drives the budget down for all job offers, these days.

jjdebenedictis
01-18-2012, 05:59 AM
An online friend occasionally tweets the more ridiculous freelance rates he sees. He spotted this one recently; ya gotta love the irony!

"I need an editor. I WON'T PAY OVER $1/HR. No exceptions and I will reject anyone that does not follow those rolls."

Follow those rolls; they look like they know where they're going.

BunnyMaz
01-18-2012, 06:16 AM
Well the guy writing that job add is right about one thing. He really does need an editor.

Silver King
01-18-2012, 06:30 AM
...Well the guy writing that job add is right about one thing. He really does need an editor.
The thing is about those very low paying job listings is that the employers will, in most cases, receive exactly what they are paying for: crappy writing for crappy pay. And that's what they deserve.

Shadow_Ferret
01-18-2012, 10:44 PM
The other scary thing is there are people who think by taking these jobs it either gets their foot in the door of a writing career or they simply don't know what the going rates for writers are and this causes a ripple effect through the industry lowering the value of what we do. Why should businesses pay professional rates when there are so many amateurs eager to do it for almost nothing?

BunnyMaz
01-18-2012, 11:53 PM
The other scary thing is there are people who think by taking these jobs it either gets their foot in the door of a writing career or they simply don't know what the going rates for writers are and this causes a ripple effect through the industry lowering the value of what we do. Why should businesses pay professional rates when there are so many amateurs eager to do it for almost nothing?

Yup, exactly this. I wouldn't be so down about it if the job ads didn't have so many eager freelancers bidding on them. I find myself stuck between accepting the situation and bidding on work that I know will pay me so little for my time I'm better off not doing it, or just not applying for any freelance work at all.

veinglory
01-19-2012, 12:51 AM
The are also people in developing countries that are living on these wages. The trick is not to be competing for basement wages/basement skills jobs--which will always exist

Shadow_Ferret
01-19-2012, 03:59 AM
The are also people in developing countries that are living on these wages. The trick is not to be competing for basement wages/basement skills jobs--which will always exist

Kind of hard not to compete when it seems basement wages are becoming the norm, at least on the Internet.

Snitchcat
01-19-2012, 04:31 AM
While deplorable, there are people in developed countries that make their living on such pay. For them, every little helps. Would higher rates be great? Of course. But reality can be cruel and unfair.

Snitchcat, who has been there (and is borrowing Maryn's post sign off style for this post -- thank-ee!).

veinglory
01-19-2012, 08:02 AM
Kind of hard not to compete when it seems basement wages are becoming the norm, at least on the Internet.

Jobs on general boards on the open internet are the writers equivalent to getting construction work by holding up a sign in on a street corner. It is the norm where it is the norm, which is not the place to be, generally speaking. You have to winnow your way into the next tier up.

Those that pay those wages generally get pretty much their money's worth and nothing more. But I am not going to tell someone who can live for a week on an American dollar that shouldn't take it.

BunnyMaz
01-19-2012, 09:36 AM
Jobs on general boards on the open internet are the writers equivalent to getting construction work by holding up a sign in on a street corner. It is the norm where it is the norm, which is not the place to be, generally speaking. You have to winnow your way into the next tier up.

Those that pay those wages generally get pretty much their money's worth and nothing more. But I am not going to tell someone who can live for a week on an American dollar that shouldn't take it.

That'd be fine, if half of these low-wage jobs didn't also specify things like "native English speakers only". I don't begrudge the other bidders their chance to earn what might be a good wage for them.

sickmuse
01-22-2012, 08:42 PM
Sometimes you have to do work for .01/word to buy ramen, unfortunately. If I could have gotten a job churning out a 200k novel for that amount of money, I probably would have done it. I definitely wrote a nonfiction book for $300 once, because that was all I could find and I really needed to pay some bills. Now that I have more experience I would probably ask for higher, but not everyone knows where to look for better paying jobs.