Whoa! I just finished reading a post from Yo Prinzel who has become my personal hero — at least for the day. First, we all know the freelance writing biz is, shall we say, like standing on the shoreline of a great body of water and hoping desperately to get to the other side despite hurricane winds and 30 foot waves. In other words, the journey to find and get work is, interesting.
Now, get this, the woman I mention here came across and applied for a $7000 gig on Elance (I am not a fan). All went well — resume, writing samples, application — and she was in the running along with three other writers — and impressive feat in the stormy seas of Elance.
Now for the clincher: the company rep required that each finalist write a three to five page rewrite — FOR FREE!! My hero withdrew from the running because:
“It isn’t practical for a writer to give every prospective client a free sample. It is cost prohibitive, supplies the potential client with free content that the writer would normally get paid for, and should not be necessary when samples and recommendations are available.”
“Asking for a free sample that will take hours to complete shows a disrespect for the writer’s professional experience, time and talent. If you were really blown away by a writer’s samples and experience, you would have the respect necessary to hire based on that. Since that is not the case, I would guess you haven’t found the right writer yet and I will just take myself out of the running while thanking you for your consideration.”
Now the question becomes, was she stupid to blow this gig off? In my opinion, she did not “blow it off.” She simply took a good look at serious indicators that this gig could be a setup for personal and professional disaster. Reason? If a company exploits the hungry and needy just because they can, what does that portend for how they will treat these same in the future?
Not good, not good at all. Go for good karma, folks and screw the slavery.