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Okay, now let's start a stringer rates threat...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by daytonadan1983, Aug 20, 2019.

  1. GoogieHowser

    GoogieHowser New Member

    If I would’ve covered every game last football season I could’ve paid for my moms obituary.
    cake in the rain likes this.
  2. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    My publisher keeps asking me to find stringers, which I've had a hard time doing. For whatever reason, we've found some good photographers around town but no writers I'd trust to get me something halfway decent and clean on deadline.
    Part of it, too, was that I was embarrassed to tell them what we pay. For a long time it was $25 a story. I got them to go up to $50 for one reliable guy I trust and it took some asking. Covering a high school football game is a six-hour gig when you factor in travel. $50 is minimum wage. $25 is an insult. I'd rather ask someone to do it for free as a favor.

    Thankfully, our two photography stringers do do it for free. One guy is semi-retired and makes good money. He says a couple hundred bucks over a couple of months is more aggravation than it's worth because it's extra paperwork on taxes.
    The other guy, his wife works at the paper and their daughter was a cheerleader at one of the schools until recently. So he was going anyway and did it for us to get free admission to the games (I know, I know; but he knows the rules of professionalism and does great work). He also shoots college football for us for basically the same reasons. He enjoys it. The trade is, he sends me a crap ton of pictures and he doesn't have to buy season tickets. Works for me.
    sgreenwell likes this.
  3. Della9250

    Della9250 Well-Known Member

    I have that same problem -- plenty of photographers but no one wants to write
    Batman and SFIND like this.
  4. SFIND

    SFIND Well-Known Member

    Same here. I've grown tired of emails of Moms/Dads with cameras or the self-professed "semi-pro" photographers (whose action work is absolute shit) emailing me wanting work. I've got a boilerplate response on the ready.

    Of course, I know why there are plenty wanting to photograph and none wanting to write. The sideline access and shooting is "fun." Writing is "work."
    Batman likes this.
  5. Della9250

    Della9250 Well-Known Member

    I have actually talented photogs, not just parents but young kids in college/just out that want to shoot. I'll be in trouble when they get actual jobs
  6. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I've told this story before, oldie but goodie ... my old shop covered a ton of games and my editor was always on the lookout for more stringers. I'd sometimes have one shadow me on Fridays and come Monday I'd check in with the boss to tell him whether the person was worth sending out on their own.

    One night I had an older fellow and we got along quite well, and he really seemed to know his stuff. Asked if he could leave at halftime, no problem, I knew he'd be able to handle it. Editor calls me Monday ... "Jeez, you didn't have to kill the guy." "Huh?" "Your stringer candidate went home and died." You can imagine how long the jokes followed me around the newsroom.
  7. Sam Mills 51

    Sam Mills 51 Well-Known Member

    I knew you were hiding something ...
    playthrough and sgreenwell like this.
  8. daytonadan1983

    daytonadan1983 Active Member

  9. Tweener

    Tweener Well-Known Member

    Wow, that’s kind of unbelievable. What’s their justification for not covering the pro golf and tennis?
  10. BurnsWhenIPee

    BurnsWhenIPee Well-Known Member

    "The page views don't warrant the time and expense to cover it."

    Given that there are thousands and thousands of people who pay (not-cheap) tickets to attend every single day, and the corporate interest for "country club" sports that generally attract fans with a lot of disposable income, I'd maintain the problem isn't interest that turns into page views. It's not covering it in a way that attracts page views.
  11. sgreenwell

    sgreenwell Well-Known Member

    Also, as even Vince McMahon among others can attest to, there's a big difference in what kind of companies you can get advertising on golf pages vs. other, "low brow" stuff.
    BurnsWhenIPee likes this.
  12. flexmaster33

    flexmaster33 Well-Known Member

    It's a miracle if you can get Gannett to take on an assignment. But yes, those rates are absurd. If I see it's a Gannett paper I just pass on even offering most times. I remember checking their website to purchase one of their photos years back and it was a ridiculously high price.
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