I am a member of a number of freelancing sites where I look to see what projects are on offer.
Frequently I am amazed at the payments that are being offered as a recompense for the work. All to often there are posts that state they are only prepared to pay a set (low) fee for a set number of articles.
What amazes me more is that people actually bid on these jobs. I know that many will say that the bids are from people who do not have English as a first language, and they are struggling to feed their families, because they come from the poorer regions of the world.
However this creates a dilemma, all writers from which ever country they come from have had to study English to reach an acceptable level, but the quality of the work is often poor.
Basically what I am asking here is do people who consider themselves good writers have a minimum set fee that they will not go below.
While it would be good if the writers of this world could all come together and say enough is enough, our knowledge and expertise no longer comes cheaply, I doubt that it will ever happen.
What are your feelings on this?
Should writers continue to accept low paid work, or should a message be sent out loud and clear to potential employers that slave labor and articles mills are old hat and writers expect a good payment for their knowledge.
If you look around here (or do a search) this topic has come up several times, domino214.
The online auction marketplace includes many bidders who can work for less than what is considered a living wage in the West. Some examples include those in BRIC or developing countries, those who have lower, few or no expenses (i.e., live with parents, a spouse or someone else who supports them) those who look on the odd writing task as a relaxing hobby.
If you are a serious writer it is difficult to earn a decent living from the auction sites, if the payment expectation is $5/500 words of immediately useable copy. At that rate, you'd have to churn out 6000 words/day to make US minimum wage--about 24 pages.
But then, most serious writers do not rely on the auction sites for the bulk of their work. In fact, most serious, professional writers don't even use the auction sites to fill in, as the time you spend bidding on low paying jobs would be better spent finding clients who will pay you appropriately. This is true for any kind of independent professional, for that matter. $3/word may be more than you can expect if you're just starting out. $0.20 or $0.25 shouldn't be.