The past few years have seen a wave of unionization across the media industry, but freelancers have been left out of the benefits of labor organizing. This unilateral announcement, reached through discussion with the National Writers Union and Freelance Solidarity Project, is part of an effort to improve working conditions for freelancers across the industry and to ensure that all
writers and contributors are treated with the respect they deserve and
compensated equitably for their work. In commissioning new work, Jewish Currents will share these guidelines with its freelancers alongside a formal contract; we are also making them publicly available here. Below are some highlights:
- Whenever possible, editors shall make a good faith effort not to go longer than three weeks without letting commissioned writers know the status of their commissioned piece.
- Management and editors will not assign freelance-generated ideas to others on the editorial team.
- Jewish Currents will indemnify and defend a freelancer against any third-party claim arising out of any article we publish, unless the claims arise out of the freelancer’s breach of representation, warranty, or obligation under their contract.
- Jewish Currents will publicize base rates for freelancers, and commits to pay equity for disadvantaged and underrepresented groups.
- Jewish Currents commits to paying freelancers 25% upon receipt of a draft, and 75% upon completion; freelancers will be paid within 30 days of completion.
You can find the entire agreement here.