Shame on You AOL/Huffington! NO More Literary Booty Calls

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Kristen goes FULL VIKING.

Okay, so I just about calm down then see something that fires me up. So yes folks, I put on my war paint. And Huffington Post? You have simply gone too far.

Enough.

Some of you may be asking what has gotten my panties in such a bunch. A friend of mine, Chuck Wendig, who’s a fantastic writer and legendary blogger brought this quote to our attention yesterday in his post Scream It Until Their Ears Bleed—Pay the Fu&%ing Writers. In Chuck’s post, it’s easy to tell what set him off. Check out this quote:

Um…bite me?

Um…bite me?

THIS Folks, is what happens when we let FREE get out of hand. FREE has side-effects and one of the primary side-effects are hallucinations that the other person likes it and needs it and actually you’re doing them a favor.

Jackass.

Jackass.

Before we go any further, yesterday I mentioned that I love the work of economist F.A. Hayek and I will say that what Huffington is doing? It IS…*gags* “just.”

They’re doing what they are doing with the permission of those who contribute. Those who contribute feel/believe that it is worth the “partnership” with Huffington and you know what?

That is their right.

Technically, there is no exploitation.

I once was excited to be asked to post for Huffington. I’ll admit, I bit too. At first I felt this gushy pride like I’d been asked to the prom by the captain of the football team, Huff Po. He was soooo cute and other kids would see me on Huff’s arm and be soooo jealous. What that would do for my status!

*hair flip*

But what began as this fantasy that Huff loved me turned sour when he didn’t bring me flowers and only wanted to bend me over the limo for a quickie before he picked up the date he really loved, Advertisina.

Advertisina doesn’t give anything for free. She has standards and so Huff respected her.

Me? I was a literary booty call.

At first I thought my needs would be met. Two posts later? All I wanted to do was cry, eat Ben & Jerry’s and watch some movie with Bette Midler in it.

Advertisina would never be treated this way.

(Read how blogger Chloe Jeffreys was duped by Huffington into being part of a Depends commercial where of course, she was NOT paid).

Authentic Writing

So this assclown Hull believes unpaid workers are more authentic and that quote alone is enough to make me throw up just a little bit in my mouth. Authentic. Can you guys imagine any other business saying this and getting away with it? Any other business so flagrantly exploiting hard working people and getting off scot-free?

Wait. They don’t.

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Paul Stein

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Paul Stein

AOL/Huffington reportedly brings in $2.3 billion a year and Huffington’s entire business plan rests on profiting off unpaid workers. This means no benefits, no healthcare and no…PAY. Again, if any other business did this? People would lose their ever-loving minds.

But they don’t.

Why?

Well, it’s only writers and they should feel honored to be able to share their work outside of their grandmother’s basement.

We writers are continually treated as if others are doing us a favor and not the other way around. Did I mention that Huffington Post sold for over $300 MILLION?

WRITERS DID THAT.

Shame On You, Arianna Huffington

Original image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons via C2 Montreal

Original image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons via C2 Montreal

And maybe what is making me postal is the sheer hubris I’m seeing. Arianna Huffington wrote a book called Thrive and over at Forbes did an interview on why entrepreneurs should embrace the third metric.

All I have to say is…

If Money and Power are two of the metrics and Ms. Huffington calls them LEGS then what exactly is this THIRD METRIC she wants me to embrace and why do I suddenly feel dirty all over again?

Embrace it. Just like that. Sure Baby, I’ll respect you in the morning….

Ms. Huffington is so far removed from reality, she doesn’t even realize she’s a troll.

It (the third metric) matters to entrepreneurs with big ambitions because in this new definition of success, building and looking after our financial capital is not enough. We need to do everything we can to protect and nurture our human capital as well. ~Arianna Huffington

Wow. Don’t you love how rich ladies tell you that money isn’t important. Btw, money is a HUGE factor in how most of us see success.

Hold on, it gets better.

Many of the problems contributing to millennials’ stress — from a weak job market to massive student debt — require political action and economic reform. But at the same time, there are things millennials can do to help strengthen resilience and ingenuity in the face of adversity and also lead to greater performance in the workplace. Meditation, yoga, getting enough sleep, renewing ourselves, and giving back are all ways to make us better at our jobs at the same time that they make us aware that our jobs don’t define who we are. ~Arianna Huffington

Folks, there are few times I am speechless but I need a minute.

I’m back.

Ms. Huffington, I know you’re a mega-millionaire, but I am just going to speak for us little people. What is contributing to our stress are predators like you creating vast systems of wealth that rely on duping unpaid workers into believing you’re actually doing them a favor. Millennials are told to go to college and work really hard and eventually it will pay.

But Huffington doesn’t eventually pay, does it?

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The problem is you and your ilk have generated a system where it’s socially acceptable to exploit workers and then demonize that worker if she has the audacity to complain. Ms. Huffington, how DARE you write about me living the life I want, about not settling for less than I am worth?

HOW…DARE…YOU.

You have set the precedent for all kinds of other businesses to find lapses and loopholes to get around compensating contributors. To use technology to get around paying workers.

Workers whose contributions have been valued at some amount or how else would you pay taxes?

Food for thought.

And if they aren’t employees then you don’t need to give them benefits even though they benefitted you to the tune of $300 MILLION. But what do you care? You get to hang out with your pal Oprah who also benefits off unpaid performers who can help her push the same soma about Living the Life You Want.

Sure, and doing porn movies will eventually lead to big roles in Hollywood.

Ms. Huffington, you create a business model that prides itself on not paying contributors and then have the freaking gall to say the answer to worker stress is….YOGA?

Original Image via Wikimedia Commons

Original Image via Wikimedia Commons

But I have to applaud you. You figured out how to monetize Stockholm’s Syndrome.

Btw, Ms. Huffington, embrace your own third metric.

To quote Chuck:

We can pretend that money is somehow a corrosive influence, that it corrupts the journalistic process — oh, wait, but Huffington Post is valued at tens of millions of dollars? Hull even says that they’re profitable. Well, of course they are. It’s easy to be profitable when you don’t pay the people.

Actually, Chuck, I have a correction. HuffPo sold for hundreds of millions.

But again, let’s look at this notion of how NOT paying contributors helps “maintain integrity.” No, I think fellow author KJ Charles said it best:

Let’s be honest: if producers don’t pay people to write, then the people writing are the ones who can afford not to be paid. Which, as with publishing internships, means that the people who can get ahead are the ones with money. The rich parents, the lucrative day job, the well-paid spouse. When producers don’t pay for content, it privileges the voices of the wealthy.

There was a time when writing was a pastime of the wealthy because they were the only ones who could afford to write. Do y’all really want to go back there?

I don’t.

Btw, might I mention that virtually every revolution started with an entitled aristocracy pissing off the working and middle class. We are Digital Citizens, NOT Digital Serfs.

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 Put On Your War Paint

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So here’s the deal, folks. If other writers want to write for Huffington? Have fun storming the castle. Me? My hypocrisy only goes so far.

First, as a writer, I refuse to be a literary booty call. Do I guest post for folks? Sure. But the people I am guest posting for aren’t making hundreds of millions in advertising dollars so they get to pay me with exposure because that is the only capital they have. FREE is on my terms and I am its mistress.

OBEY.

But…

I am not just a writer, I’m a consumer, too. Writers consume a lot of information. We read it, promote it and link to it. Until Huffington mends its ways? It is DEAD to me.

As a consumer, I choose to only support businesses who operate ethically.

I will no longer link EVER to Huffington.

I will not promote ANY article from Huffington.

I will tell everyone who will listen why they need to boycott Huffington.

I will boycott any advertisers linked to them and have no problem shaming the advertisers too because they are profiting off the backs of unpaid workers.

I have uploaded anti-HuffPo memes over on my Author Kristen Lamb page and at Pinterest on my Bite Me HuffPo board for others to see and share.

I am installing Block Site on my web browsers to block ANYTHING tethered to Huffington.

When Huffington issues an apology? I will link to that. When they post about their new plan to add in levels where writers can be compensated? I will link to that too.

And I will link to all PAID Huffington articles.

I had no problems with Huffington using free labor to get started. It was an untested idea. But once HuffPo started raking in the moolah from advertising? I feel there should have been a moral imperative to create some kind of compensation (especially from a woman who went on to write self-help books and claims to have a soul).

The business model should have changed once HuffPo reached profitability.

Sure, the untested newbies could work for exposure, but the pros? The ones blogging regularly who made Ms. Huffington a rich, rich, RICH woman? If she’d actually cared about workers and I dunno…basic human freaking rights….she would have been better served creating a system of compensation instead of cashing out BIG and running off to write Rich White Lady books about how we need yoga instead of money to be successful.

(Btw, she doesn’t accept yoga or exposure for those books. She wants $$$$.)

Writers, we are at a crossroads. We have to start standing up to this crap. If Huffington approaches you to post? I hope you say no. If you’re currently posting for Huffington, I hope you walk away. They have more than enough money to pay for content, but they won’t so long as we keep supplying them. Cut off the free supply and all that’s left is the paid stuff.

But everyone has to make their own choices. Me? I put on my war paint.

PAY THE WRITER

What are your thoughts? Are you tired of aristocracy telling you that you don’t actually need money? I am all for capitalism but this is sociopathy. Do you find it more than a little hypocritical that Ms. Huffington is calling for economic and political reform to aid in the weak job market…a weak market that SHE helped create?

If your landlord doesn’t take exposure dollars, do you think he will accept yoga and meditation as payment?

What do you think of embracing Ms. Huffington’s third metric?

Are you going to put on your war paint? I hope you do! Maybe if enough crazy pissed off painted writers are floating around the Internet people will pay attention.

I really DO love hearing from you!

To prove it and show my love, for the month of FEBRUARY, everyone who leaves a comment I will put your name in a hat. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the hat twice. What do you win? The unvarnished truth from yours truly. I will pick a winner once a month and it will be a critique of the first 20 pages of your novel.

For those who need help building a platform and keeping it SIMPLE, pick up a copy of my latest social media/branding book Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World on AMAZON, iBooks, or Nook

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  1. #1 by Claudette Melanson - Author of Dark Fantasy on February 19, 2016 - 10:29 am

    Reblogged this on Claudette Melanson, Author of Dark Fantasy and commented:
    Reblogging

  2. #2 by renée a. schuls-jacobson on February 19, 2016 - 10:31 am

    I’ve never understood why writers would give their stuff to The Huffington Post. It’s always baffled me.

    • #3 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 10:35 am

      I bought into the “exposure” thing a couple years ago and then two posts in was all WTH? NO! They were reposts of stuff already on my blog, not original content but still. I think we have all been dazzled by this “Exposure” BS and we need to wake up. We are Dorothy in the field of flowers.

      BTW, So great to SEE YOU!

      • #4 by athenagrayson on February 19, 2016 - 6:01 pm

        Did your “exposure” in HuffPo net you any raised visibility? Maybe if more people knew the truth of what they could expect through “exposure,” they wouldn’t be so quick to fall for the line.

        Because “exposure” is nebulous enough, and feeds right into a very persistent and pervasive myth that “being on TV” or the equivalent thereof, is an instant pass to discovery, to “Calgon, take me away!” dreams of rocketing into stardom, fame, and fortune. And for someone with a few stars in their eyes (as writers sort of need to have, otherwise we couldn’t make up so much fun stuff in our books), “exposure” can make something else look a lot like shinola.

        • #5 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 6:10 pm

          I didn’t see an uptick in anything except trolls who love to congregate. I think they are selling snake oil and there are so many writers they’ve diluted power. I feel that the only writers who probably DO benefit are acting like columnists who dedicate fresh content (not reposts as was my case.) But see, that’s the shill. You begin with, “Well, this is content I have already posted” (that’s when they approach you). But when you get your own account where you can upload blogs, you start thinking, “No, I need to put something FRESH out there” never really appreciating that you are getting screwed. It’s like a gambler chasing his losses. When I felt that sudden urge to “up my game” and offer fresh content? That’s when I snapped back to reality and went, “HELL NO!” That is not healthy for me or my fellow authors.

  3. #6 by Icy Sedgwick on February 19, 2016 - 10:32 am

    Agree so much with all of this. The only attention they’ll get from me now is my middle finger!

  4. #7 by Niina on February 19, 2016 - 10:34 am

    Oh wow. I’m speechless about that quote but am glad you found words. I think that’s an absurd way of looking at paying writers! I’ve never written for anyone really, so I haven’t run into either free or paid writing in that way, but this seems so unfair it’s odd people would do it. I get the free exposure, even experience and “yay I get to write for a big name magazine!” but to do it continuously? Huff isn’t something I usually read so my boycott won’t affect much but I don’t want to support something like that. I hope others won’t either. Thank you for bringing this up!

    • #8 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 10:38 am

      Tell your friends and family though. For public shaming to work? We need all the help we can get.

  5. #9 by Jami Gold on February 19, 2016 - 10:34 am

    I love that this is becoming a bigger issue now with other blogger-writers (like Chuck–and me too!😉 ) adding their voices to the outrage. Did you see my post yesterday about how to judge when a “work for exposure” opportunity might be worth it or not (and how to make the most of that exposure if it IS worth it)?🙂

  6. #14 by Theo Fenraven on February 19, 2016 - 10:36 am

    I didn’t know HuffPo didn’t pay its writers until I read Chuck’s blog yesterday. I will no longer support that site in any way.

  7. #15 by Nancy L Nieberding on February 19, 2016 - 10:41 am

    Kristen,
    I noticed a typo here:
    Well, it’s only writers and they should feel honored to be able to share their work outside of there grandmother’s basement.

    There should be their.
    Cheers/love your work!
    Nancy

    • #16 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 10:46 am

      THANK YOU! Yeah been up since five writing this and missed it. *high five* Thank you my SISTAH for looking out for me.

  8. #17 by seekandfind on February 19, 2016 - 10:41 am

    Shameful. Even God is ashamed of them. “A workman is worthy of his wages. (Luke 10:7).” Ah yeah, HP … writing is WORK. Hard work. But the writers keep perpetuating this so as long as they do it’s never going to end. This is why I stopped writing freelance … it was getting just plain insulting. Happy to be paid what I know I’m worth.🙂

  9. #19 by Shawn MacKENZIE on February 19, 2016 - 10:44 am

    Reblogged this on Off the Rails – Track 451 and commented:
    Writers have value. Anyone who tells you to do it for FREE is so wrong. Great Post from Kristen Lamb

  10. #20 by Shawn MacKENZIE on February 19, 2016 - 10:47 am

    We were talking about this just last night at my writers’ group. Hackles raised all around. Thank you for this, Kristen. We mustn’t be devaled or taken for granted. (reblogged at https://offtherailstrack451.wordpress.com/ )

  11. #21 by Amy Shojai on February 19, 2016 - 10:48 am

    I made a deal and wrote for Huff-Po along with PawNation for about a year or so. Here’s how it worked. I had a hosted blog at the time over at RedRoom.com which supported writers, and they had a deal with PawNation & Huff-Po to promote some of their writers by invitation-only offers to write blog post contents for these sites. RedRoom got a link back to their site, the author got a link back to the RedRoom blog, and a higher profile venue to be seen….AND AND AND RedRoom folks (not PawNation or Huff-Po) paid the author’s chosen nonprofit $100/post. So I made arrangements to have the $100/post fee donated to Cat Writers Association (http://www.catwriters.com) to fund an annual $500 Mentor Award (given to the person who helps another writer attain career goals). Nope, I was never paid by PawNation, or HuffPo, but earned enough for CWA to fund more than 4 year’s worth of special awards that in turn helped other writers. THERE ARE CREATIVE WAYS for writers to get paid….just saying.

    • #22 by Amy Shojai on February 19, 2016 - 10:50 am

      Oh, and since then RedRoom went away when it was sold to WattPad.

      • #23 by Rebecca Warner on February 19, 2016 - 5:29 pm

        Hi Amy, interesting to see you here and to get your input. Why did I blog for Huff Po for free? They put up two of my books at the end of the article. I got 11 sales. So…not a lot, but something for something. And no other publication would care about my girly blog. With so many departments, there was a nice “fit” for mine in Huff/Post50’s “age appropriate attire” area. But I do agree that we authors are giving away way too much of our product. Shall we cover this topic on Pam’s show on 3/2? (After I’ve gushed about your books?)

        • #24 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 5:52 pm

          I blogged for them, too Rebecca and the thing is, HuffPo could be great for writers but the time has come to add in paid tiers. Enough of the free crap.

    • #25 by Lauren Gregory (@mslaurengregory) on February 19, 2016 - 5:17 pm

      Commendable, in that you helped a lot of people. I’m glad you did.

      BUT (huge but–like, Jabba-sized)….

      I have to point out, first, YOU did not get paid to write. You were given money to give away. Which, I assume, still didn’t pay your mortgage or phone bill or even get you a meal deal at Taco Bell, in and of itself. And I assume it wasn’t a benevolent choice you were given–“You can choose to get a paycheck or give the money to charity.” While I’m all for charity and mentoring–I do as much of it as I can–*that* kind of set up still plays into the idea that the WRITER doesn’t need to get paid. It still perpetuates the screw-the-creator paradigm. It says, “Hey, we’re not going to actually compensate YOU for your work, but we’ll throw some chump change out in your name to salve the gash we opened in your backside when we bent you over. ‘Cause, well, it makes us look good when we charity.” I’m not saying your acceptance of the deal was wrong; I’m saying them presenting that deal was the same ol’ bullshit. It was a way for them to get (their rocks) off cheap.

      Writers deserve to be paid for producing stuff that earns money for someone else. Real money. In their own bank account. Not with exposure. Not with free stuff. Not with charitable donations.

      We shouldn’t have to devise creative schemes to get a paycheck. This–the HuffPo ridiculousness, the “we’ll donate in your name” scams, the literary booty calls (I love that, Kristen)–is the new pyramid scheme of the literary world. It looks shiny and new, because it’s (trumpets blaring)…

      DIGITAL CONTENT…FREE for EVERYONE, AND it will make EVERYONE RICH! (cue infomercial oohs and ahhs.)

      But it ain’t (read: shouldn’t be) free, and it’s still only making those who ride the peons rich. Seen another way, they’re the ultimate vanity publisher. We’re paying to get used. We pay with our time, skill, and dignity.

      We’re the prostitute groveling on the curb, and–this is fucking rich–we actually THANK THE JOHN for beating us up and stiffing us after he tells us he’ll etch our name on the bathroom wall at Denny’s. And when he shows up next Friday night, we’ll hop in the car again, grateful to have a good way to kill a few hours.

      What we do is important. Our work comes from years of education (whether formal or self) and requires time, skill, and knowledge. It is a craft–one of the most important and valuable ones in the world. When we allow others to use our assets and products for profit without compensating us appropriately, we cheapen that craft and ourselves. We have to stop thinking squeezing a few pennies–or NONE–from the machine is a good deal. We have to stop accepting our own devaluation as the status quo.

      (Sorry, that wasn’t all directed at you, really.)

  12. #26 by 1authorcygnetbrown on February 19, 2016 - 10:50 am

    Thanks, Kristen! I refuse to be anyone’s whore! I am joining you in the boycott! I pulled Rise of Machines to the top of my reading list too. Its time we writers took back our content!

  13. #27 by realthog on February 19, 2016 - 10:51 am

    Well said! I’ve been ignoring HuffPo for years.

  14. #28 by newfsull on February 19, 2016 - 10:52 am

    “Right on the money.” Ops, poor choice of words.

  15. #29 by E.M. Goldsmith on February 19, 2016 - 10:53 am

    Thanks Kristen. Reblogging this on my site as well. This attitude is infuriating. Writers need to eat too after all.

  16. #30 by Darke Conteur on February 19, 2016 - 10:54 am

    Reblogged this on Darke Conteur.

  17. #31 by Nancy Elliott on February 19, 2016 - 10:55 am

    This “do it for the love of the craft” and for “exposure” business model is in the performing arts as well. I was just asked to perform at an event that will not cover my expenses or time away from my shop. I agreed because of who asked me, my admiration for that person, their lifetime of writing work and an already booked return next year to the same event in a well paid and spotlight performance.
    I’ve done all I can to remove my musical works from digital download and streaming sites. Pennies on the dollar are humiliation, not compensation.
    I would rather build a face to face, dedicated following than people who only want free stuff. The work hours and emotional expenditure that go into any type of writing, or art, have monetary value once that work is made public.

  18. #32 by haoconnor on February 19, 2016 - 10:55 am

    My eyes have been opened by you yet again, Kristen! Thanks for going on the war path and calling out these people on their hypocrisy! They’ll get no more support from me and I truly hope they are boycotted until they have no choice but to listen. It’s time for them to start setting a good example, for a change. Shame on them!

  19. #33 by Joel S. Copeland on February 19, 2016 - 10:55 am

    I had a similar experience with Clickworker; though they did pay, it was at an utterly ridiculous rate and the grammatical hoops one had to jump through were astoundingly subjective according to what they perceived was a “proper” writing style. Also, after not passing a series of tests, they put me on a “blocked” status until 90 days had passed. In other words, for what they wanted from a writer, they certainly were not worth working that hard for one to two cents per word. I completely agree with your stance against HuffPo. They can digest a stool and promptly perish.

  20. #34 by Cynthia Herron on February 19, 2016 - 10:57 am

    OH, my goodness. I have a crick in my neck from nodding so much. Nailed it!!!!!!!! (I almost hyperventilated.)

    When? When does this end? Are we living in dreamland, Kristen, thinking one day this will change?

    *slugs back strong, black coffee*

  21. #35 by storytellergirlgrace on February 19, 2016 - 10:59 am

    One of my new year’s goals for 2016 is to start making money from my writing (getting some stories published, monetizing my blog, etc). Your recent posts about paying the writer have come at the perfect time to help keep me on track for these goals, and to help me think more deeply about the concepts of working for exposure versus actually making writing a career.

    My opinion of HuffPo has gone down since I read the news about them refusing to pay writers, but after reading the details you’ve discussed in this post, I shall now join you in boycotting them completely.

    Thanks for another excellent post!

  22. #36 by Laura Hile on February 19, 2016 - 11:00 am

    I am speechless at the idea that if someone writes something “for pay,” that means it isn’t authentic or real. Really, Stephen Hull, really?

  23. #38 by KJ Mansfield on February 19, 2016 - 11:04 am

    I go out of my way to avoid Huffpoo. Much of their content is abhorrent and their headlines are the equivalent of Click Bait.

  24. #39 by Nickie Asher on February 19, 2016 - 11:07 am

    I’ve stayed away from that site for years. That bag infuriates me and always has.

  25. #40 by yosemitesyd on February 19, 2016 - 11:09 am

    Love it Kristen! Right on! My words for this year are redeem and retrench. In that spirit, I ditch one thing daily. (On January 1, I ditched the nightly “news.”). You are the inspiration for what gets ditched today. You got my ire up today girl. I am ready to cross the Delaware.

  26. #41 by annaerishkigal on February 19, 2016 - 11:11 am

    I stopped following Huffington Post a while ago because I got tired of their elitist, anti-worker rants. With the new year, I declared I was all done giving anything away for free unless I got something tangible out of the deal (such as a new reader gave me their email address for the right to send them a new release announcement). Everybody is out to profit off of us and I’m tired of it. Interestingly, after a month-long hiccup of my sales tanking after I drastically restricted my freebies to a single series starter (on the distributors) and a single reader magnet (to get their email) instead of the 4-5 I was normally giving away, my sales revenue has now noticeably increased. Nothing earth-shattering, but definitely a strong upward trend across the board at all distributors. I suspect it is as you say … when you give it away to the Football captain for free … he doesn’t respect you.

    My blog is purely for my readers, so I don’t wish to share an author-gripe there as they aren’t interested, but I -did- just share this in an author group WG2E because I really hope we can all start banding together and demanding a little respect. HERE: https://www.facebook.com/groups/wg2estreetteam/

  27. #42 by Danny Murphy on February 19, 2016 - 11:11 am

    That there was some savage writing! And appropriately so. When Edward Bulwer-Lytton wrote that the pen is mightier than the sword, he must have been thinking of a pen wielded by someone like you, Kristen.

  28. #44 by mdellert on February 19, 2016 - 11:25 am

    Reblogged this on MDellert-dot-Com and commented:
    Shame on HuffPo indeed….

  29. #45 by kdrose1 on February 19, 2016 - 11:27 am

    Reblogged this on authorkdrose.

  30. #46 by thesexiestwriter on February 19, 2016 - 11:30 am

    You are right, this is not all Huffpro’s fault. We as writers don’t respect our own work or we wouldn’t give it away. How can we expect others to respect it?

  31. #48 by Kassandra Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 11:31 am

    I am reminded of the Southern plantation owners claims during the days of slavery, that they were actually helping their slaves by taking care of them.

  32. #49 by Diane Majeske on February 19, 2016 - 11:32 am

    OMG. I …. think I might have a girl crush on you. What an excellent, impassioned column.

  33. #50 by darkwriter67 on February 19, 2016 - 11:34 am

    Wow. I had no idea things were like that with HP. Thanks for the eye-opener, KL. Reblogged on Illuminite Caliginosus.

  34. #51 by Jinxie G on February 19, 2016 - 11:34 am

    I’m with you and Chuck and Wil Wheaton on this! You might want to see this, if no one else has pointed it out: http://thewritelife.com/working-for-free/

  35. #52 by The Ranting Monkey on February 19, 2016 - 11:35 am

    For once, no argument from me. Full boycott until they change or disappear, I’m not picky about which.

  36. #53 by martinbeks on February 19, 2016 - 11:38 am

    This might be my favorite thing you’ve ever written. I rarely read HuffPo on a good day (they’re politically polarizing, and it’s aggravating). I’m definitely sharing this message!

  37. #54 by anaatcalin on February 19, 2016 - 11:48 am

    Truth is not only HuffPo or the writing market do this. The exploitation and stupid talk about doing things ONLY out of passion and not AT ALL for money is in every field. Think of the unpaid internships. Ring a bell? The disease is so widely spread that – at least in Germany – it’s impossible to find one of thise “learning jobs” they used to have and thrive on anymore. Everybody wants you to work for free, earning “experience.” Of course, as you put it, neither the grocer nor the landlord will accept payment in “experience,” so the whole deal just makes me sick.

    • #55 by Jessica Barrett on February 19, 2016 - 12:06 pm

      Great point.

    • #56 by ontyrepassages on February 19, 2016 - 3:12 pm

      You’re exactly right. This is a cancer that’s spread through business for years and continues to grow worse, especially for writers. I remember the movie The Pursuit of Happyness with Will Smith where a score of interns worked full-time for nothing to earn (I believe) a single slot. I’ve read the book. The man lived on the street with his son while he was an intern. Meanwhile, these companies are earning millions (in some cases billions). This, like with Huffington, is an amazing abuse of power and human resources. And they wonder why people are grabbing their pitchforks to storm the castle?

      • #57 by anaatcalin on February 19, 2016 - 3:17 pm

        So. Very. True! Tightly related to the so-called “cost optimization,” which is nothing but another word for greed. Because only the costs for work force are “optimized,” not the costs for the main shareholder’s new yacht for example, which he most probably boasts with in a reality show.

        • #58 by ontyrepassages on February 19, 2016 - 3:44 pm

          Absolutely! “Optimization.” What a positive sounding word for justifying the greed that abuses power and grows poverty. Reminds me of “collateral damage.” When human lives become insignificant to decision makers a course correction is needed. Some people, it would seem, learned nothing in history class.

  38. #59 by Andrew Reynolds on February 19, 2016 - 11:49 am

    Huffington Post, Huffington Post… Been racking my brain on this one. Can’t say I’ve ever read that one.

    Wait, I remember, I had a FB friend who use to post their stuff all the time, until the day I decided I needed one less friend on FB.

  39. #60 by Patti Hermes on February 19, 2016 - 11:51 am

    I’ve been telling my friends and family to stop supporting HP ever since the sale, when the actual market value became public, over two years ago. Thank you for coming on board. I credit Will Wheaton for speaking out loudly enough for more people to finally hear the message. Now with you and Chuck spreading the word, looks like the fuse has been lit.
    Even if HP never changes, old habits die hard, but at least others may think twice before trying to exploit their workforce. One can hope.

  40. #61 by Kathryn Jane on February 19, 2016 - 12:03 pm

    Reblogged this on Mystery and Romance.

  41. #62 by victoriadougherty on February 19, 2016 - 12:04 pm

    I, too, refuse to contribute to Huff Po. In fact, I’d be willing to “get on the bus” to picket their headquarters if I could get a thousand or more writers to join me.

  42. #63 by Jessica Barrett on February 19, 2016 - 12:05 pm

    I also bought into the exposure and credibility that Huffpo can offer, and started writing for them in order to get their name on my portfolio. However, I agree, I felt “dirty” for doing it, and I’m really struggling to buy groceries and pay my electric bill with exposure.

    This reminds me of the writers strike in Hollywood several years ago. Without writers, there are no stories, there is no content, there is nothing on the internet, on TV, in movies, etc. Same goes for artists of other kinds. We’d have no home decor, no fashion, no music. Why are artists all okay with GIVING our talent and time away just to be validated that we’re decent? It’s total crap. I’ve never had a plumber or electrician do jobs for free until I was convinced he did a good enough job to deserve to be paid.

    As writers, I feel like we need to stick together and encourage one another to charge what we’re worth. We deserve to make a LIVING WAGE just like anyone else does. What frustrates me about HuffPo is that they’re missing out on the opportunity to really up their own credibility and level of talent. If they paid writers, they’d have a lot more writers wanting to work for them. Good writers, who want to tell good stories, regularly, and with great intention. Not just shooting off blog posts here and there in their free time for some exposure (again, me, guilty of exactly this).

    I can understand when you’re new, needing exposure, needing to guest post b/c it’s your only option, etc. I can understand giving away music and paintings so that people find out you exist. But, everyone is devalued if we aren’t charging what we’re worth. Everyone. Content mills expect to pay .01-.02 cents per word, which is INSANE, and NOT A LIVING WAGE, but they’re getting away with it because people take those gigs (I know that the cost of living outside of the US is different, so that’s not lost on me, however, it still doesn’t make it okay). We need to charge what we’re worth. Every one one of us. Writing needs to be respected as a skill, talent, career, job, etc. just like any other profession. We work our a**es off. It’s only fair that we’re paid like it.

    Thank you, Kristen, for another great post.

  43. #66 by Wendy Dewar Hughes on February 19, 2016 - 12:05 pm

    This isn’t just about Huffington Post exploiting writers, it’s about all writers and creatives giving our work away for free so we can be more than the plain girl/guy at the prom “hoping someone will like me.” I learned years ago as a visual artist that benefitting someone else and hoping for “exposure” was worthless and always resulted in a net loss for me. The same applies today to giving away my writing.

    If all writers and creatives stopped “giving the milk away” and stopped competing with each other on price, we would all benefit. So get mad, and value your work, your skills, your talent, your hours. Charge more, demand more, and laugh when someone suggests that you do it for free.

  44. #67 by elenanewton on February 19, 2016 - 12:06 pm

    I’m glad to be with you on this one 100%.

  45. #68 by Ms Hanson on February 19, 2016 - 12:06 pm

    Quote: I argued with Life for a penny,
    Only to find, dismayed,
    That anything I had asked of Life,
    Life would have paid.

    I have a helpmate due to a disability, and I pay her far more than the going rate. When I realized a significant savings in my monthly bills, I gave her a raise. As a young woman, she needs to know her time is valuable. BTW, my SO once made the mistake of addressing aloud that my helpmate’s hourly rate was more then he was currently demanding, and I bet he still shudders when he remembers the icy stare I offered in return.

  46. #69 by foguth on February 19, 2016 - 12:09 pm

    Kristen, thank you for sharing this information – I will share the link with some new writers.
    I, for one, have never worked with Huffington because my policy was $1/word or more for an article. The only thing I write for free are pet advice and humor in my blog, foguth.wordpress.com plus I also wrote Latitudes & Cattitudes which is a very short prequel to my Sea Purrtector series with the intention of offering it for free to generate interest in the series. – B&N, iBooks, etc. honor the free, but Amazon and its subsidiaries ask 99c.

  47. #70 by Mais on February 19, 2016 - 12:12 pm

    Kristen, I totally agree with you. This is really out of hand and I can’t believe people actually are willing to write for free! I read your other article about Oprah and it’s so pathetic how these millionaires and billionaires are too damn cheap to pay people who are barely making it paycheck to paycheck. We need to take a stand together and stop these monsters from exploiting us willingly. HP need to know their limits and need to change their ways. Undoubtedly we need to boycott them in every way possible until they change their ways, which will send the msg to other companies that they can’t follow their corrupt lead.

  48. #72 by Celia on February 19, 2016 - 12:15 pm

    Thanks for this and your other recent posts on this topic. I didn’t realize the bigger issues. Now I wonder what other sites have the same practices? How can we know? Though some of them may not be getting the $$$ HuffPo is, where do we draw the line? Off to read Jami Gold’s post…

  49. #73 by Stuart Land (@StuartLand_wrtr) on February 19, 2016 - 12:27 pm

    I think you’re friggin’ brilliant!

  50. #75 by Renee Lannan's blog on February 19, 2016 - 12:29 pm

    It’s a trend in our information age that the people who bring the information don’t get paid for that work? What kind of crazy world has the internet bred???

  51. #76 by Marla Martenson on February 19, 2016 - 12:36 pm

    Awesome post Kristen! So true.. I get asked to do different projects for people for free often. I finally just had to put my foot down. I have a mortgage to pay and food to put on the table. My creativity deserves compensation. I love your bravery and war paint! xx

  52. #77 by katepavelle on February 19, 2016 - 1:08 pm

    People have died of *exposure.* Naked, penniless, hungry, and freezing in the snow.

  53. #78 by Julia on February 19, 2016 - 1:14 pm

    Thanks for exposing this. I had no idea the writers were unpaid. I will no longer go the website and will tell anyone who will listen. I love your point about only the wealthy will be able to make their views known. The majority will have no voice.

  54. #79 by memoirsofahusk on February 19, 2016 - 1:34 pm

    I think I’ve just been vaporised. You do really, really angry so well it’s contagious. Aaaaaaaargh!

  55. #81 by Patricia Robertson on February 19, 2016 - 1:37 pm

    Joining the boycott! Posted this on my author facebook page “She would have been better served creating a system of compensation instead of cashing out BIG and running off to write Rich White Lady books about how we need yoga instead of money to be successful.” Kristen Lamb on Arianna Huffington.

    • #82 by athenagrayson on February 19, 2016 - 6:10 pm

      In an amusing irony, when I clicked the link to the Forbes article, Forbes wouldn’t let me continue to the content because I’m running an ad blocker by default in my browser. For places specifically like Forbes, which has been known to serve up ads with malware embedded in them. So instead of reading her article or going on to Forbes, I did some yoga instead.

  56. #83 by terripicone07 on February 19, 2016 - 1:38 pm

    Thanks, Kristen, for further educating us writers. I haven’t been approached to write for Huffington nor asked to speak for Oprah, but I hope they call soon so I can say, “No, thank you anyway.” And something I can do to join the revolt is if I notice anyone on Facebook (or anywhere online) linking to HuffPro, I’ll make a statement to the effect that they don’t pay their writers, their food source, but are worth millions. Keep up the good work!

  57. #84 by bethtreadwayauthor on February 19, 2016 - 1:41 pm

    The Empress is Naked! How’s THAT for exposure? Torches – check! Pitchforks – check! Cue the theme song! (And make sure the musicians are remunerated) 😈

  58. #85 by Terry Nelson on February 19, 2016 - 1:46 pm

    I love passionate writing and this blog is an exquisite passionate rant. I loved the ‘digital serfs’ phrase, for that is the heart of the matter. I never liked Ariana from long ago when I first heard about her, so this does not surprise me. Arianna has created an American equivalent to a foreign ‘sweat shop.’ But even foreign sweat shop workers get something. I am on the boycott bandwagon. I will storm the gates of Babylon. Thanks for the article.

  59. #86 by jamiewauthor on February 19, 2016 - 1:57 pm

    Reblogged this on White's Wyrd World and commented:
    This. SO. Much. This. I wrote my own story a little bit back about my own experience with #free. Now, I feel I should share this in solidarity for other writers who have decided they are worth more than HuffPo (which I’ve never liked anyway. I feel it’s too biased most of the time) is willing to pay them.

    I know people who write articles for them, and I really hope they step away from the practice. By continuing to accept “exposure”, they are helping to perpetuate this terrible practice.

  60. #87 by cpbialois on February 19, 2016 - 2:09 pm

    Reblogged this on The BiaLog and commented:
    I totally agree. If a writer is willing to offer their services for free, that’s their choice. But we all deserve to be paid. It’s really that simple.

  61. #88 by Woebegone but Hopeful on February 19, 2016 - 2:12 pm

    Wow! Huffington have really embraced their 1984 Orwellian side!…… ‘If you work for free you are a true writer. If you expect payment you are a ‘thought criminal’…doubleplus good!!

  62. #89 by alanalagrand on February 19, 2016 - 2:18 pm

    It’s like sweatshops. Oh wait, sweatshops pay their workers (if only a little). Look up Huffington Post sweatshops, and you will see a long list of articles about how Huffpo is against them. The irony: I doubt the writers were paid to write those anti-sweatshop articles. I wonder if they see it? Huffpo encourages us to shop ethically (i.e. for items where workers are reasonably paid), and yet they pay zero dollars to their working writers. I guess it’s, do as they say, but not as they do.

    Thanks for exposing this and taking action, Kristen! Huffpo refuses to take action to support their writers, and they could learn from you.

  63. #90 by K.B. Owen on February 19, 2016 - 3:04 pm

    Fab post, Kristen! The warpaint is so YOU. I have a question about BlockSite. Is putting in “Huffington Post” enough to block it, or are there affiliated sites that could be blocked as well?

  64. #91 by Ernesto San Giacomo on February 19, 2016 - 3:06 pm

    HuffPo has always been a self-proclaimed “champion” of liberal values and the enemy of evil “conservatives.” Perhaps HuiffPo believes that writers live on government assistance and therefore don’t need to be paid.:-) Sorry…just couldn’t resist.

    • #92 by Jessica M on February 19, 2016 - 5:53 pm

      I was waiting for it! Huffpo’s opinions about “free” don’t surprise, especially being that we live in an increasingly “free” entitlement society. Writers should be grateful, right?

  65. #93 by lalouziane on February 19, 2016 - 3:06 pm

    Some time ago, I decided Huffpo was no a go for me. I haven’t seen anything at all to cause me to reconsider that viewpoint.

    I will gladly boycott Huffpo with other writers!

    We don’t go to movies for free do we?

    We don’t go to major sports events for free do we?

    Why do people think the entertainment/information they get from our writing should be free?

    We have to stand up for ourselves. It’s time.

    I applaud you, Kristen, and besides, who doesn’t love Vikings?

  66. #94 by Cassidy Frazee on February 19, 2016 - 3:07 pm

    “That’s not a real authentic way of getting copy.” I guess Steven King and J, K. Rowling aren’t real writers, ’cause there was money exchanged for their copy. And I had no need to click on Harlan’s video: I KNOW what he thinks about not paying the writer.

  67. #95 by lalouziane on February 19, 2016 - 3:12 pm

    Reblogged this on Swamp Sass.

  68. #96 by courtellyn on February 19, 2016 - 3:20 pm

    OMG, I’m sharing this everywhere.

  69. #97 by ontyrepassages on February 19, 2016 - 3:29 pm

    Before muskets were taken down from above the mantle, and long before Washington crossed the Potomac, there were pen-wielders like Adams and Jefferson and they belonged to the Committees of Correspondence (1773-75). Unpaid interns and writers? Where is this much different from “taxation without representation?” Now, of course, they want our labor and they want if for nothing.

  70. #98 by Melodie Campbell on February 19, 2016 - 3:31 pm

    Dynamite post, Kristen.
    I stopped writing for The Globe and Mail (Toronto daily) a few years ago because they stopped paying. First it was $200 a column. Then they dropped it to $100. Then, why pay at all? Sorry, they lost this writer.
    After years of freelancing, and with 10 books under my belt, I don’t need ‘more exposure.’ My publisher doesn’t care about exposure. Like every other writer in Canada, I need sales.

  71. #99 by Matthew Wright on February 19, 2016 - 3:38 pm

    I think the reported HuffPo issue is merely a symptom – we’re facing a more fundamental change to society and the basis of economic production, brought on by technology. Writing happens to be what we, as writers, are seeing. But it’s widespread across the arts (particularly) and in any field that can be translated into ‘virtuality’. To my mind it’s a general shift as fundamental as the Industrial Revolution, and as far-reaching. Part of the problem today is that some of the philosophies that emerged from that upheaval 200-odd years ago are also guiding the response to the current one, evangelising and normalising the exploitation.

    • #100 by ontyrepassages on February 19, 2016 - 4:23 pm

      Quite true. The “American Dream” has long placed business leaders on a pedestal. Everyone wants “their slice of the pie.” Achieving great wealth is revered. Business people create jobs! That’s how it’s supposed to be, but they also abuse power if not kept in check (monopolies, anyone?). So, can those in power exploit the workforce and demand free labor? Obviously they can because they’ve been doing it and the practice has only grown in the Digital Age.

      This reminds me of Jurassic Park and the classic line, “Yeah but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could they didn’t stop to think if they should.” It applies here as well. Our business leaders did and now we’re realizing the “park” isn’t fun anymore. We’ve become Dino Happy Meals. And yet, people still keep lining up to work for free. As Kristen points out, a united front is needed.

  72. #101 by Bianca Bowers on February 19, 2016 - 4:31 pm

    Thanks for exposing the hypocrites, Kristen. I have never bought into the huff post hype & this post reminds me why.
    Bianca.

  73. #102 by P Taylor on February 19, 2016 - 4:35 pm

    I’m sure editor Stephen Hull doesn’t work for free, so his work can’t possibly be “real.” HP disgusts me, too. Wil Wheaton also wrote a blog on the lack of pay by HP and writers working without pay. This was after HP contacted him for permission to reprint one of his articles. When he asked about compensation they said it would get him “exposure.” After years on Star Trek and then more years as a professional writer, Wheaton hardly needed exposure. I do wish people would get the stars out of their eyes about the largeness of HP. It’s not a news organization, the research and writing is often on par with a gossip magazine. It’s slant is biased to liberal and there can’t possibly be a standard for fact checking. I’ve seen so many outright lies on HP. One look at HP and it’s clear honest journalism is dead. Thank you Kristen for shining another light on this horrible publication. They make a fortune on the back of others. But probably the only way writers will ever be paid fairly for their work on HP is if people boycott advertisers in mass until it happens. Anyone who is interested in Wil’s experience with HP can read his piece at: http://wilwheaton.net/2015/10/you-cant-pay-your-rent-with-the-unique-platform-and-reach-our-site-provides/

    • #103 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 19, 2016 - 4:57 pm

      What just gets me is that Huffington was a HUGE proponent of raising the minimum wage to $15 and called out McDonalds on wage slavery. Um, have they looked up the word “hypocrite”?

  74. #104 by Widdershins on February 19, 2016 - 4:52 pm

    Oh, but the Huff pays the ‘real’ writers, just not those … well, I don’t want to use bad language, but sometimes one has to … those bloggers. There I said it!

  75. #105 by Danny Murphy on February 19, 2016 - 5:01 pm

    #PayTheWriters #JusticeForWriters #HuffPoMustPay

  76. #106 by jodelle55 on February 19, 2016 - 5:12 pm

    Such a good article! I believe in everything you say here. And I also loved your Viking war paint photos!

  77. #107 by Jami Gold on February 19, 2016 - 5:21 pm

    I didn’t see this one linked yet in the comments…
    Writer Unboxed (Porter Anderson) just wrote about this today too: http://writerunboxed.com/2016/02/19/amazing-disgrace-the-pride-of-the-huffington-post/

  78. #108 by ariefarnam on February 19, 2016 - 5:45 pm

    Definitely. The problem with the “unpaid is more authentic” argument is that the unpaid writers = privileged class. Other than a one-off post, people who have to work long hours, don’t have time to write that type of quality. The people who have time to write that way with no pay are overwhelmingly wealthy, white and do not have physical disabilities. If you’re all about showing how progressive you are, screening your writers for these traits is really a bit of a problem.

  79. #109 by beauxcooper on February 19, 2016 - 6:36 pm

    I agree completely and your post inspired one of my own published today – there’s a link in there for you, too.

    http://www.beauxcooper.com/2016/02/artists-know-your-value.html

    Thanks for fighting the good fight!

  80. #110 by Lauren Gregory (@mslaurengregory) on February 19, 2016 - 6:56 pm

  81. #111 by Juju on February 19, 2016 - 7:37 pm

    AMEN Sista! I have always thought that HuffPoop is just that CRAPOLA! If you aren’t willing to pay me then you stink!

    I was writing for a local women’s magazine and agree to write for them in the beginning for free as they got up and running. When I went back to the woman that was making money off of advertisers and getting all kinds of perks from her said advertisers and YET it was MY content that was getting the rave reviews and allowing her to get more ads and she would not honor our agreement to start paying me, I WALKED away. Everyone thought I was crazy.

    Look here: This is what I tell people who want my content or services for free (because after all isn’t it my ministry) is that when the grocery store, the mortgage company, the electric company, etc. tells me I can have it for free then I will work for free. BUT until that happens YOU NEED TO PAY ME!
    I have given a lot of time, services and money away; I volunteer in my community but I need to have an income.
    BTW when we do that we are NOT whores but sluts. At least whores get paid.
    NO CASH, GAS, or ASS no one rides for free!!!! OH NO, I just ages myself.

    LOVE THE WAR PAINT!!!!

    Juju

  82. #112 by Neil on February 19, 2016 - 8:28 pm

    The modern world and global access to keyboards seems to have diminished the worth of the written word. I can understand why, every time you look at a comments section (not this one, obviously) or your Facebook page you can get where the non-writers are coming from.

    To put the sauce on that rancid metaphorical burger, these industry leaders – who double as thought leaders in today’s society, a situation which is sometimes justified but a lot of the time is not – will always sing the praises of the person who will “knuckle down” and get in on the bottom rung, working for free in order for the privilege of being allowed into the party. I thought that it was obvious to everyone why they do that, and how they got to where they were: value perception.

    The successful business/publication owner has unshakable faith in their own value because of their success, because people keep mentioning them as examples of success, because other successful people congratulate and gladhand them, and because they can whip out their bank balance at any time and see scientific proof of their success in the form of a long string of zeros on the page. Meanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum, the beginner – or even intermediate & advanced as this post has informed me, which was an eye-opener, I thought all y’all kickass writers up there at Base Camp Alpha on the North Slope didn’t have to put up with that stuff – is not successful, by definition. They put less value on their efforts, on their work, and on themselves, because they are not receiving all of that stuff the successful person does. Plus, the current system practically forces them to write for free if they are not specialist authorities on anything, in order to build a portfolio with value and start earning decent money for their words. It’s a crapshoot, and it won’t change until we do.

    On a lighter note, I started following this blog ages ago for all the writing advice, and I’m on my second book already with the first one currently in my editor’s hands. I’m loving this recent slant to your posts, I’m a sucker for some righteous indignation and sticking it to the man/woman. Also, I’m now going to go watch that Harlan Ellison documentary, never saw it before, so thanks for that too! Stay frosty out there Kristen, and thanks for all you do.

  83. #113 by Alana on February 19, 2016 - 9:05 pm

    Bravo!
    How can I send you $5?🙂

  84. #115 by rbi43 on February 19, 2016 - 10:25 pm

    I’m sure you’ve seen this post from Wil Wheaton about fighting back with HuffPo when they tried to do the same thing to him.

    I’m not sure where I stand on the *free* issue all around but the fact HuffPo and others use it as a way to build their own wealth is obnoxious so I stand behind you 100% on that.

    http://wilwheaton.net/2015/10/you-cant-pay-your-rent-with-the-unique-platform-and-reach-our-site-provides/

  85. #116 by Jenni Legate on February 19, 2016 - 11:15 pm

    There are so many bloggers out there trying to get a following, trying to get clicks, and for many, the tradeoff might initially be worth it. I’ve been thinking a lot about the issue lately after cutting ties with a magazine that refused to pay in more than exposure and reading Jami Gold’s excellent posts about the issue and C. Hope Clark’s Funds For Writers blog (which convinced me to cut those not-for-pay ties). It’s definitely an issue that needs more thought. I am sharing your post everywhere. Ariana Huffington calls herself a progressive, but there is nothing progressive about taking advantage of people. Thanks so much for taking on HuffPo head-to-head.

  86. #117 by lynnkelleyauthor on February 20, 2016 - 12:57 am

    Woot! Woot! Woot! Go, Fearless Leader, go! I stand behind you 100%.

  87. #118 by lynnkelleyauthor on February 20, 2016 - 12:58 am

    P.S. Dang, you’ve got to make a video wearing that makeup and your viking hat!

  88. #119 by nancysegovia on February 20, 2016 - 5:51 am

    Reblogged this on Nancy Segovia and commented:
    Boycott Huffington Post until they start paying their writers

  89. #120 by nancysegovia on February 20, 2016 - 5:56 am

    I’m with you, I am boycotting HuffPo until they start paying their writers. I wonder if she also thinks yoga and meditation will pay the electric bill, buy groceries, or put a roof over her head? Utter rubbish!

  90. #121 by Fiddly Dee on February 20, 2016 - 5:56 am

    Reblogged this on Fiddly Dee Does… and commented:
    Great debating raging RE HuffPost’s model of not paying bloggers for their content…

  91. #122 by Kate Johnston on February 20, 2016 - 6:53 am

    I agree. Exposure is great … to a point. HuffPo needs to start giving back to writers who helped them get rich. Love this kick-ass article and am sharing!

  92. #123 by Kate Johnston on February 20, 2016 - 6:59 am

    Reblogged this on 4am Writer and commented:
    Couldn’t think of anything more important to post today than this kick-ass article from Kristen Lamb. Huffington Post exploits writers in the name of exposure. Join #BoycottHuffPo

  93. #124 by jennabrownson on February 20, 2016 - 7:20 am

    Trading exposure for nothing. We writers should run screaming in the other direction from that empty offer.

  94. #125 by John Keller on February 20, 2016 - 7:45 am

    Kudos Kristen. HP is garbage!

    May I repost on my Facebook page? If not I understand. Thanks for all you do.

    Best,

    John

    >

  95. #127 by Ron Vitale (@ronvitale) on February 20, 2016 - 8:16 am

    I recently had an article published on Elephant Journal and it’s the same thing. For the “privilege” of getting my article posted to help build my platform, they took my article and last December’s Paris attacks and I felt special too (*hair flip*). I then submitted another piece and an editor wrote back and asked me to re-write. I re-wrote my piece about the dynamics in a dysfunctional family affected by alcoholism and weeks later hadn’t heard anything back. I wrote to the editor and she sent me a short note saying that in their terms they let you know that if they don’t hear back from them after 7 days, well, you’re rejected. I thought about this for a moment and it sunk it: HuffoPo , Elephant Journal and hundreds of other like-minded sites are preying on the weak. Writers are desperate to make a name for themselves so that they can get exposure and they’ll do anything to get published.

    But then I realized that this has been going on for decades (it’s just easier now): Think about all the writing contents out there: “Send us $25 and your story will be submitted for a chance to be published in our prestigious magazine/website/zine/whatever.” Suddenly, all of this hit me like a ton of bricks: Why am I looking for other groups to validate me as a writer? And why would I give HuffPo or Elephant Journal my writing for free? Not any more. I am with you!

    This is what I have decided to do and I hope that many people who follow you choose to do the same. When WE band together, we can help each other out. I have been actively looking for like minded writers to write guest blog posts on my website (www.ronvitale.com/blog) and, in return, I write on their sites. By creating backlinks to our sites, we increase our SEO, share our work with each of our own mailing lists and help raise up all our profiles. Between my fantasy books that I’ve published on Amazon and other platforms, blogging, advertising, etc., I’m choosing to no longer be a passive victim begging HuffPo and Elephant Journal and their like to take my work for free. Instead, I’m working smart and building my platform in a more systematic way. Yes, this is hard work. Yes, it’s going to take time, but I’d rather have the freedom and control of my own work than to give it away for free and get not much in return.

    Kristen, your words make a lot of sense to me. I’d only say that instead of my getting angry at HuffPo, I’m turning my back on them and their like to build my own platform (like what you’ve done over the years with #MyWANA). Together, we are powerful. We can help each other. My mailing list, your mailing list, her and her, and his and his–well, they add up if we work to help and promote each other.That’s where I see the power landing in our own laps.

    • #128 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 10:41 am

      AMEN! Though I will say I have an additional layer to my brand and that is as a thought leader/pundit. Places like HuffPo NEED to be exposed for what they are. Since I have taken on more of an activist role, my platform is expanding rapidly and (for me) that is good since MY audience currently are mainly authors. I write for authors and sell books for authors. For you as a novelist? You have it 100% and I have your back😉 .

  96. #129 by lonestarjake88 on February 20, 2016 - 8:22 am

    You know Kristen, I submitted an article to HuffPo but after reading this, nevermind! I stand by you!

  97. #130 by Rachel Thompson on February 20, 2016 - 8:27 am

    You may have gone at Huff the wrong way. Should have asked for money up front. “Remittance required,” should be the first sentence of your pitch. If anyone wants to make money freelancing do journalism and not opinion stuff. Figure out what the publication needs and offer that. Stay away from big players until you are known in journalism. Submit to smaller paper publications via their business offices and not web content only sites. Small publications always need quality content, look at them, their recent history, what they generally print and figure out what they need now, or even ask them, and submit that. Freelancing none-fiction for money is not that hard but one must get to know the ropes. Newspapers and mags use a lot of stringers as do corporate news letters and trade publications. The money is in consistent and timely submissions which won’t pay much at first but they do pay. Sometimes thinking big doesn’t pay, but someone will pay if you provide what they need. I would not bother with Huff other than trying their paper publication but only if I was local and could cover local beat stuff. School board and city government stuff, the boring junk they need that no one wants to cover, is a foot in the door.

    • #131 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 10:34 am

      Actually I didn’t go to them, they came to me. One of my posts went viral and they wanted to reprint it. I have no interest in being a journalist. I love blogging and love blogging here. But thanks for the info for any budding journalists who happen by😀 .

      • #132 by The Ranting Monkey on February 21, 2016 - 12:55 pm

        Hmmm…I hadn’t thought about this before but your comment here reminded me that they often seek out writers to reprint their work. If the work was already written for free, wouldn’t their line about the authenticity of free writing still apply?

        I hated the quote before I had this realization but now it just looks even more asinine.

        • #133 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 21, 2016 - 1:14 pm

          Being FREE has nothing to do with authenticity. He’s covering his ass because he knows it’s wrong.

          • #134 by The Ranting Monkey on February 21, 2016 - 1:20 pm

            Oh, I know free has nothing to do with authenticity, I’m just saying the content is often already created, for free by bloggers who go viral with a post, making the line even more ignorant.

  98. #135 by Nya Rawlyns on February 20, 2016 - 8:48 am

    Reblogged this on Love's Last Refuge and commented:
    Kristen follows up on Chuck Wendig’s post. Both articles are must reads.

  99. #136 by Lori Holden, Author on February 20, 2016 - 10:19 am

    Your limo scene clinched it for me. No more, HuffPo. No more writing, no more reading, no more linking.

  100. #137 by Patricia, Room With Books on February 20, 2016 - 10:45 am

    Reblogged this on Room With Books and commented:
    Words to learn from!

  101. #138 by Britt Skrabanek on February 20, 2016 - 12:07 pm

    Get ’em, girl! I am stunned…truly. It’s the whole kit and caboodle for me, because of the Yoga advice too. Ugh. Totally puked in my mouth a little bit when I read that.

    We live in such a content-driven world, and yet so many of these companies have the audacity to devalue writing that THEY are using to promote their brand. I can honestly say that it’s a struggle for me inside the biz world too. They need writers like crazy, but they want to pay as little as possible. Free is always preferable.

    Another thing people want for free…Yoga. As a a Yoga teacher, I can’t tell you how many times people have asked me for free private lessons or corporate wellness classes. Because I’m a Yogi, I shouldn’t care about money.

    Guess I’m an inauthentic writer and Yogi for wanting to eat and pay my bills. Oh, well.😉

  102. #139 by mitziflyte on February 20, 2016 - 1:34 pm

    Reblogged this on Mitzi Flyte and commented:
    I was nodding my head while reading this.
    I actually had an email from…somewhere. You know those “catch a dumb writer emails” that for some reason latch onto…dumb writers Well, this one wanted me to PAY for a course on learning how to write for HuffPo. WTF?
    Write for free? But I have to pay to learn. F that!
    I’ve watched the Harlan Ellison video several times (at least twice here) and it never gets old. He speaks the truth.
    The guys fixing our barn roof didn’t want to do it fro free.
    The man who bulldozed the snow in front of our cars wanted to be paid.
    I can’t get free groceries…although I can get senior discount on Wednesdays. But I digress.
    Living costs money.
    I never had a trust fund. My trust fund was/is ME.
    People who create – books, stories, articles, paintings, photographs, songs, etc…these people (like you, like me, like WE) deserve to be paid if you are using our creation for…anything and are making money on it.
    So, Kristen, I am boycotting HuffPo with you. It used to be one of my favorite places to go when I was bored…No, nope, nada, uh-huh…
    It will just give me more time to write.

  103. #140 by Deborah Stachelski (@DebStachelski) on February 20, 2016 - 2:05 pm

    I think we, as writers, need to be careful about becoming too angry and entitled for not being paid for every piece of work that gets out there to the public. Many of the greatest authors were broke and not recognized, and continued to write for the love of the craft. I agree popularity doesn’t pay the bills, but if you are really concerned about HuffPost not paying to republish your stories, then you should apply for a JOB with them. They pay staff writers to produce several stories a day, on deadline, in time crunches, and on specific topics they may or may not be interested in writing about. Do you ever notice they publish news immediately as it happens? Who do you think is doing that? Their staff writers/editors. Being a staff/paid writer entails much more than typing up a blog post in your free time in a leisurely manner. By demanding pay for blog posts that you already have published on your own blog or not, it devalues the work of staff writers, and I have a feeling you would be outraged at that too should you be a staff writer somewhere. Many bloggers submit subpar work to the HuffPost and still get published – it would be insane for them to be able to sift through every single one and determine who deserves pay, who doesn’t, and how much. If you want to submit only work you are paid for, then submit to sites that publish only original content, but be ready for them to ask you to re-write or re-edit your work to their specifications. Freedom of writing comes at a price, and that price may be you don’t get paid for it to be published on a bigger platform such as HuffPost. If you learn how to use it, unpaid blogging can easily turn profitable and drive traffic to your personal blog. Let’s not be melodramatic writers waving fists in the air, and understand the blogging industry a bit better.

    • #141 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 3:28 pm

      We agree to disagree.

      • #142 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 4:21 pm

        The trend has been a continuing devaluation of all the arts. Technology for the first time has made it possible to exploit on a massive scale. In 1990 writers were paid. Granted most were rejected and it was tough to break in, but the work was paid. Huffington and similar bottom-feeders have made it harder and harder for artists to make a living wage. We are paid in “exposure” and supposed to be grateful. And, yes, 20 years ago exposure was great because it generally led to PAID work. Now? It’s only leading to more jobs that pay with more exposure (because they have to compete with Huffington who makes hundreds of millions because a majority of the positions are essentially “volunteer”). If we don’t stand up, writing will go back to people who only do it for the love (generally the wealthy who can afford the indulgence).

        Screenwriters have walked out. Television writers have walked out. Every once in a while, these folks need to be reminded that they only exist because WE permit it and doing sound business is hardly “entitlement.” If a vendor walks away from doing business with Walmart are they “entitled”? Why is that only applied to writers as if what we create has no value?

        And sorry, but it is impossible for them to sift through the work to determine who is PAID? IT IS THEIR JOB. That is what an editor DOES. Also we have algorithms. There is NO reason why they cannot easily calculate who is blogging regularly and who is drawing the traffic and then allow that author to start being paid. They measure EVERY click, or they wouldn’t get paid. So if a writer’s blog is regularly passing a certain threshold? She gets paid because she is the one driving traffic to ads.

  104. #143 by ellenchauvet on February 20, 2016 - 3:22 pm

    Reblogged this on Erotic Vampire.

  105. #144 by xxsarahcaroline on February 20, 2016 - 6:02 pm

    I feel like this post should have ended with *Mic Dropped* !!
    You literally closed with Phoenix.
    Ms. Lamb you are a hero.

  106. #146 by swiveltam on February 20, 2016 - 6:08 pm

    “the people who can get ahead are the ones with money. The rich parents, the lucrative day job, the well-paid spouse. When producers don’t pay for content, it privileges the voices of the wealthy.”

    This alone is worth being angry about.

    Though,,, I try to look at both sides, so would the caveat be that the newbie writer gets an assload of traffic that they NEVER would have gotten had they not been on Huffington? Is that payment in a way?

    Now, I will agree if you are a repeat blogger for Huff and NOT getting paid after the FIRST freebie, then I’m ready to put up my fists and have an all out brawl,

    BUT…I’m willing to find some middle ground here.

    And here’s another example. Guest blogging/.swapping. I can’t afford to pay someone to guest blog, but I’m happy to swap. Are we taking advantage of each other?

    Can I ask a personal question? Have you paid all your guest bloggers?

    • #147 by swiveltam on February 20, 2016 - 6:20 pm

      Had another thought. What do you think about Bloggers having a “If you liked this blog. Pay a writer. Send her some money” Paypal button on the blog. Would it turn people off? If you are using your blog to market your novels? It’s an interesting idea.

      • #148 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 9:32 pm

        No, I like the idea of a PayPal tip jar. I am going to add one when my website is rebuilt and this blog moves there.

    • #149 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 9:29 pm

      Actually, yes. I choose guest bloggers who are teaching classes for WANA and the guest blogs here fill seats in their classes. I spent $50K of my own money building a digital infrastructure for them to be paid. It is not uncommon for me to cut checks for $400-$1200. It’s why I generally don’t have a lot of guests.

      • #150 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 20, 2016 - 9:35 pm

        And at the same time, I don’t solicit guests, they come to me. Generally if they have the qualifications to post for me, I ask them to hold a class at WANA so they can then use the guest post to gain payment. A rare exception would be Britt who was a VERY new writer and she wanted to simply reblog a post of mine, but her variation was so good I asked if she would like to guest post (which helped launch HER platform using mine). But in this instance, we are talking ONE POST. Not people who are essentially acting as columnists and making me a millionaire. I write my blog. No one else. Also, I am not making hundreds of millions on advertising and if I were? My business plan would be different.

        As far as guest posts? I don’t think that is a parallel. It is A post. Same with news agencies who don’t pay for interviews. If CNN interviews me? It’s generally a one-time deal. They aren’t expecting me to essentially act as an ANCHOR with no paycheck.

        • #151 by swiveltam on February 20, 2016 - 11:24 pm

          YAY! I thought so, but I just wanted to put it out there in case anyone else was wondering!

          I hope you don’t think I was calling you out or putting you on the defense. I like to come at things from all angles and have a complete picture and understanding.

          It’s amazing the time you take to comment/answer us! Thank you for setting the bar high and being a great example!

          And right, That’s kind of what I was thinking about guest posts and swapping posts. I guess I think its kind of the same for a one off for Huff. ONE and only ONE freebie.

          I am surprised by how little its helped some of the writers who’ve done a post for them (as they stated here). I’m sure people could track their incoming clicks from Huff and gauge if it boosted their readership. Though a one day boost doesn’t mean anything if you don’t gain new followers, right? If might be fascinating if writers could share those stats. Fuel for the revolution?

  107. #152 by blondieaka on February 20, 2016 - 8:21 pm

    Wow lady! Go for the juggular ..why not..love your posts…. you rock😉 I can rely on you for that wet knicker moment everytime..ha ha😉 reblog coming up😉

  108. #153 by blondieaka on February 20, 2016 - 8:24 pm

    Reblogged this on Retired? No one told me! and commented:
    Another great Kristen Lamb post …..wet knicker time again😉

  109. #154 by TT Thomas on February 20, 2016 - 10:21 pm

  110. #155 by Amy on February 20, 2016 - 11:28 pm

    I would wager that probably 95% of the “writers” (bloggers) published on huff post wouldn’t be published anywhere- much less get paid for it- if not for this site. Most of the blogs that are published are boring, redundant and unoriginal. And Chloe Jeffreys, who railed against huff post live for using her, has their logo in her website as a place she’s been featured. What a hypocrite.

    You promote yourself and your media/branding book. How clever of you to jump on the “I hate HuffPost” bandwagon to promote yourself.

    Everyone does what works for them.

    • #156 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 21, 2016 - 5:31 am

      I resent your use of “writers.” If we sucked that badly I doubt HuffPo would have sold for $315 MILLION, so I will take your wager since it’s seriously ill thought out. Oh and by the way, I had three #1 best-sellers without HuffPo. Clever? Did you really just write that and put your “kind of” name on it? My brand is and always has been taking care of writers to the tune of a thousand free blogs devoted just for assisting writers. Helping them and teaching them how to became PAID professionals. Don’t you think it would be a tad hypocritical for me NOT to talk about a multimillion dollar company that is devaluing their work?

      But what can we expect from someone who doesn’t even put a name and a face on her opinion?

      • #157 by Richard A Snow on February 21, 2016 - 6:08 am

        Amy, it is simply not true that ‘everybody does what works for them’, since often, we don’t know if something will work until we’ve done it a few times. A writer may do some free work several times for Huff Po before they work out that ‘the exposure’ was worthless. Think about something: can you remember the author names of the last 10 things you read on Huff Po? I certainly can’t, and I don’t have Alzheimers. And I agree with Kristen about the cheap anonymous shots. If you’re going to take cheap snarky shots put your name and photo up.

  111. #158 by kamas716 on February 21, 2016 - 2:50 am

    The HuffPo is worthless and haven’t received a click from me in a long, long time. I take that back. They aren’t completely worthless – I do use it as a warning sign. If it appears in the HuffPo I can dismiss it. If the HuffPo were actually printed, I’d choose used toilet paper to read instead.

  112. #159 by Rod Sparr on February 21, 2016 - 11:12 am

    The above post and comments validate that: (1) the free market for goods, services and ideas works; and (2) anti-Huffers, like anti-Walmartians, anti-Amazonians and min-wagerists, are painfully self-misguided.

    Consider this analogy: The Federal Government gives away tons of Other Peoples Money (OPM) for government-building art that it can otherwise get for free (yep, artists want free exposure).

    As a federal government employee (hence, my pseudonym here), I laugh at how many of our tax dollars are blown paying for art (and let’s not forget that ALL art is psychologically priced — enough “cool people” say something’s a “masterpiece” and pretty soon fools part with a lot of their money for it). Plenty of artists would give their art to the government just for the public-space exposure. The sculpture in my building’s complex SHOULD have been acquired that way (one tour bus that passes it points it out and calls it “The Shaft” — tourists laugh over how we taxpayers got shafted out of our money for it).

    The free market principles — an alien concept for spendocrats blithely giving away OPM — dictate that art work for government buildings should cost the taxpayers nothing (and please don’t tell me that only “inferior quality art” will be displayed because that’s just another road to subjectivity hell; again, the OPM-purchased crap in and around my building, and plenty of others, is just laughable).

    Many of my friends are liberals intoxicated by the leveling theories of the left (every guy who fucked off in the back of the class and now works at McD’s “must” be paid a “living wage”). Some who read the preceding paragraph thus will cringe. They’ll well insist that the spendocrats MUST pay each artist a “fair traded” (code talk for more than it’s worth on the free market) amount. You know, because Alice or Tom “worked hard” for that sculpture or painting and thus deserves a “living wage.”

    That’s La-La Land.

    Huffington created a forum which attracts writers who accept the value-for-value compensation (free exposure in exchange for their content). Others don’t like that and now want to publicly pressure Huffpro to, you know, pay “fair compensation” (again, that’s subjectivity-hell, where we debate the precise meaning of “fair,” like for art).

    They thus want to override the free market.

    Ironically, the free marketplace of ideas is represented here, where all are free to publicly pressure (shame, etc.) Huffpro to “change its exploitative” practices. Maybe they’ll succeed (many publicly pressure pornos to stop producing porn because of XYZ harm that it’s claimed to cause).

    I support BOTH free marketplaces. I support this intellectual marketplace (though I disagree with pretty much all of those posting here) and Huffpro’s free marketplace of intellectual-labor driven content.

    I oppose, however (and I write about this in my novels and blog) what lurks beneath a lot of liberal-progressive rhetoric (see above comments using “slave” and “serf” compensation terms):
    The implied advocacy of government power (min wage laws, “fair-trade” tariffs, etc.) to interfere with the free market. Again and again (see Venezuela) such misguided socialism (misusing government power, such as through min-wage laws, “Excess Profits Tax,” etc.) foments ruination.

    I don’t want to pay for Huffpro content. Nor $20 for a Big Mac. And I have directly witnessed how spendocrats helped cause our nation’s $19 TRILLION dollar debt (see currency collapses throughout history, record capital flight right now from Venezuela and now China).

    Richard A. Snow said it best: “A writer may do some free work several times for Huff Po before they work out that ‘the exposure’ was worthless.” The same for artists giving away their art to governments. You know why: Because the market right now reflects an oversupply of art. When that contracts, government will pay the true market price for art.

    Ditto for Huffpro. Blogs like this may cause the content oversupply to shrink. Then Huffpro will pay. But if the content oversupply doesn’t shrink (I want to be free to “sell” my art at any price, even just for exposure), then I don’t want government misusing its power, which is what lib-progressives beckon when they deploy superlatives like “slave” or “sweatshop” labor (example: someone files an FTC complaint against Huffpro, or invokes federal anti-trust or Fair Labor Standards Act statutes,, etc. in a class action against it — I used to be one of those creative plaintiff’s lawyers who “found” ways to sue the Huffpros of the world; see, in that regard, the mis-deployment of government power against Uber in California, as backed by “living-wage” libs).

    • #160 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 21, 2016 - 12:21 pm

      Well I’m confused by your comment because in no way did I endorse governmental intrusion or assert things should be fair. Fair is a weather condition. I even cited FA Hayek so acting like I’m promoting anything other than capitalism of the purest form is misguided.

  113. #161 by Julie Glover on February 21, 2016 - 10:36 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I find it appalling how often people expect stuff FREE from writers. I have good friends who don’t want to pay for a whole book, because — after all — there are so many free options out there. But as annoying as that is, to be a major money-making entity and blow off the valuable contribution of their writers? Ridiculous. Just ridiculous.

    I’ve also considered writing for HuffPro, but one thing I realized is that I have never — not once — read a Huffington Post article, looked at the author, and then purchased something from said author. I doubt that exposure leads to sales for anyone. And, to me, the only reasons to write for free anywhere are friend favors (e.g., subbing on a friend’s blog) and quality exposure.

    Thanks for advocating for the writer! Well done, Kristen.

  114. #162 by Jennifer Mattern (@Jenn_Mattern) on February 22, 2016 - 4:06 am

    Great post Kristen.

    The saddest part of this for me is that we, as writers, all knew this was HuffPo’s attitude for years. It’s nothing new. But hey. If the idiocy of their execs speaking the truth for a change sheds a little more light on their exploitation of writers, I’m good with that. I hope their PR people are have a blast trying to clean that mess up.

    Lets hope more freelancers pay attention this time around and remember that favorite little bit of wisdom we love to pass along (which one of your other commenters already brought up) — that people die of “exposure;” it doesn’t pay the bills.

  115. #163 by Elle Knowles on February 22, 2016 - 8:09 am

    Reblogged this on Finding Myself Through Writing and commented:
    Should writers get paid for their content on Huffington Post? Kristen Lamb lays it on the line. After HuffPo got on their feet by promoting unpaid articles and is now raking in the moolah with advertisements, I should think so, and so does Kristen! ~Elle

  116. #164 by Joanna Mueller on February 22, 2016 - 9:07 am

    Reblogged this on Writer's Block and commented:
    This is a great read about why Huffington Post are a bunch of pompous pirates and writers need to stop settling for the privilege of writing for them.

  117. #165 by In My Cluttered Attic on February 22, 2016 - 2:02 pm

    Insightful post. It’s sad to think of a writer being taken advantaged of by someone who is making millions off him or her and their ability to write. Sounds like a free ride to me. Ms. Huffington and her post also sound like a bunch of freeloaders. She must be laughing all the way to the bank.

  118. #166 by Karen on February 23, 2016 - 12:04 pm

    The ‘authenticity’ card is such a lame excuse. Exposure may or may not lead to the writer getting the attention of the HuffPo readers, but when people do something for attention it doesn’t mean it’s ‘more authentic’ than when they do it for money.

  119. #167 by Susan Lower on February 23, 2016 - 1:02 pm

    Great post Kristen. Thanks for taking a stand for us writers.

    • #168 by Author Kristen Lamb on February 23, 2016 - 9:40 pm

      Someone has to and I am big enough that being unpopular is a career boost😛 . You keep pressing and us bigger fish have your back.

  120. #169 by ichbinmeisterin on February 23, 2016 - 5:22 pm

    Stephen Hull’s comments were so grossly insulting to all writers everywhere, and as a relative amateur/newbie, I could be the one getting the short end of the stick thanks to his and Arianna’s greed. Let’s just get one thing straight: whatever someone writes for a publication of any kind is legally their intellectual property. They have offered labor, time and expense in order to produce something, and therefore remuneration is due- particularly when it is THEIR work that is yielding a profit for the company. Isn’t that basic free market economics? Isn’t that how most companies work? I am generally neutral about capitalism, but in order to have it, then people have to get paid. People like Arianna, who pull up the ladder after they have profitted from it are disgraceful.

  121. #170 by sue marquis bishop on February 23, 2016 - 6:12 pm

    Well argued. We begin with valuing our own work. And expecting others to do the same. Womenlivinglifeafter50.com

  122. #171 by roughwighting on February 25, 2016 - 4:22 pm

    RIGHT ON!!! Love your passion and your ‘Viking-ness’ and your ability to get us writers to unite. Many have suggested tome that I send an essay over to Huff Po. When I heard they paid nada, I said no no. And I was surprised when I saw posts by some authors I respect on Huff Po. My respect lessened. These authors are with publishers (not Indie authors, like many of us), and yet they’re still selling themselves for free. WRONG. Thanks for this excellent cry to Just SAY NO.

  123. #172 by The Hungry Dog's Lair (Martin Conterez) on February 26, 2016 - 1:38 pm

    Yes. Yes. Yes. And Yes.

  124. #173 by allisonbrennan on February 29, 2016 - 10:03 am

    You are 1000% right. Everything you said here is pitch perfect. God, I love you.🙂 Hugs.

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