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 Advice Needed.

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Donato
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Joined: 07 Jan 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 2:53 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

A month or so ago for personal reasons i contacted a media outlet, known and respected throughout the world, to see if they could help with a search i am undertaking.

The producer of the show i emailed replied and asked if i would appear on the show (radio) which i agreed to, they also asked if i would write a piece about my story and what brought me to this point, i did. They interviewed me live on air and put my story on their website. They then asked if i would write a follow up piece-i have since written two more (so three pieces over three weeks) and they have been published online. It looks like i will write some more on a weekly basis-probably up to 10 weeks worth and will appear on the radio again.

However there has been minimal contact with the producer since the first week, and i seem to get an email after the weekly show saying my latest article is great and that it will be up on the website soon. I have also asked a few questions at least once and have yet to receive adequate answers, subsequent emails that mention if they have had the time to answer my questions have been i guess, been brushed offed.

I am quite happy to do this for nothing, but the better half is of the opinion that i should be paid. I would settle for a letter on headed paper saying i was a contributor for 10(?) weeks and that my work was of a "suitable/good/great*" standard. *delete as appropriate.

So how do i approach the subject with the producer-i am not a forceful person and value the benefits of 10 weeks worth of articles being published very highly and do not want to risk this.

I also would like to know who owns the (rights to the)articles i wrote/write and a photo they have. I have signed no contract of any kind, but have kept all emails and drafts of articles, i have also screen grabbed everything they have published.

If they did pay me how much would i likely be to receive-is it done on an article or word count basis.

The other thing the puzzles me and i still haven't received an adequate response is i got a show t-shirt in the mail, on the comp slip enclosed was the following "Hope to make this a great deal!!"

So to say the least i'm confused...

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Inspector Gadget
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Joined: 20 Feb 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 3:25 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I would ask for clarification of how your article provision is going to be treated before writing/submitting more. It is only fair that you receive some form of recompense for the work that you are doing, they may drop you, but, if your work is good they should be upfront about any form of payment.

Something along the lines of :
Dear Sir,
As you are aware I have made a number of contributions to your show over the last few weeks and you have indicated that you would like further submissions for future shows.
I feel that I should be receiving some form of recompense or recognition for the articles either by <letter> or <>
I also note that contact with you and the show has been minimal, feedback has been limited, I would appreciate some comments on my writing, it would help the direction that future articles could take.

plus any etc etc you want to add.

Hope this helps

P.S. The rights to the works are yours, you have signed no contract, they can't claim any rights over you, the author.

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bill2
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 3:32 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I agree ^^^ but to make sure they don't drop you I would leave my readers hanging and announce something for next week. Working for free is a good thing, but they work for money, while you do their job. It's too much a one way street there. You have your costs too.

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BRUIN
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Joined: 10 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 3:44 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

My hunch is that when you ask for money the response is going to be something like "are you a member of the writer's union? If not, we cannot pay you".

Bruin

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bill2
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 3:53 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

They don't have to pay him as a writer though, consultant is more appropriate and usually pays better too. Wink

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bearkat419
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 4:40 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

My guess is they think they paid you by sending you the t-shirt Confused

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Lester
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 4:47 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I dont think (at least in the US) there is a writers union if its non-fiction.
Joining the Witers Guild just makes it easier to get jobs in entertainment in the world.

But I bet they made $$$ (+$$$ since the $ has dropped) with ads on the website/radio show. Say if you wish me to contiune to write i would like something.. But again if you wish to be a writer this is great for your resume.

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Slightlyoutofit
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2008 5:02 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Donato wrote:

So how do i approach the subject with the producer.

The other thing the puzzles me and i still haven't received an adequate response is i got a show t-shirt in the mail, on the comp slip enclosed was the following "Hope to make this a great deal!!"



They've left the door open there for you and you don't have to be forceful. Just ask them what they mean by a "great deal".

Rights-wise, I think that because you have just handed the articles over to them, you don't have any leverage for monetary recompense on what you've given them. Although, as the author, you can probably do what you like with your work, they may also have a disclaimer on thier site saying that anything they publish is thier intellectual property and therefore a third party can't just walk in and pick your work up. You might want to hunt through the smallprint on thier website to see wether this is true or not.

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