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Time Inc. requires fee for faster payment to freelancers

Not sure how this will impact cartoonists or illustrators, though I imagine they’re treated the same as freelance writers. Gawker reports that Time Inc. has allegedly devised a fee structure that can be optionally paid if any of its freelancers want to paid promptly. The new Pay Me Now program allegedly will take 0.5% of the invoiced amount if the freelancer wants to be paid within 25 days. The percent rises incrementally to 4% for a speedy 3 day payment. Gawker’s source says the normal turn-around time for payment is usually “within a month.”

Community Comments

#1 Paul Fell
December/7/2009
@ 12:01 pm

Oh, man… you’d think Time, Inc. was one of the major airlines.

#2 Peter Murphey
December/7/2009
@ 1:09 pm

It would only make sense if they also paid an additional fee for being late with the payment. Bet that isn’t in the structure.

#3 Steve Skelton
December/7/2009
@ 1:30 pm

Let’s make everything as complicated as possible!

#4 Matt Bors
December/7/2009
@ 1:50 pm

I’ve develpoed some freelancer fees for us to use:

http://www.mattbors.com/2009/12/ill-see-time-and-raise-them.html

#5 Mike Cope
December/7/2009
@ 1:51 pm

I went to buy some groceries today and tried offering the same 0.5% charge for a 25-day payment. Didn’t go over well.

Similar situation happened at the mall, where I found a nice pair of pants with matching sweater to wear at Christmas.

And I can’t repeat here what the mechanic told me after he finished installing some new tires on our car … Sheesh … I even tried offering him the 4% charge for a speedy 3-day payment.

If stuff like this becomes the norm, we may as well change the term from “Freelancers” to “Freesuckers.”

#6 Kelly McNutt
December/7/2009
@ 4:16 pm

Time to just add %4 minimum to the cost of the project to cover for this foolishness. Sheesh.

#7 BOB QUICK
December/7/2009
@ 6:18 pm

As a free-lance cartoonist I am often amazed at some of the ways that clients try to withhold money due. It seems the larger the client the more they put on the squeeze. Kelly has the answer…charge a billing fee and demand immediate payment.

#8 BOB QUICK
December/7/2009
@ 6:20 pm

Oh-oh…I just lost my big client!

#9 Dave Stephens
December/8/2009
@ 4:01 am

Sounds like Time is desperate to hold on to their cash for as long as possible… Not the best sign of health, is it? But then, it’s really only a sign of the times. Ouch.

#10 Mike Peterson
December/8/2009
@ 5:54 am

I like Matt’s fee schedule, but I do have a question for the group: Do you actually have much luck calling magazine clients and asking them to get the check out in three days? The way Gawker is phrasing this, it sounds like Time is no longer going to do that for free. I must admit I haven’t had much luck getting clients to rush the check and have been generally happy if it showed up before I expected it — then again, my expectations are pretty low.

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