Huffington Post contributor Visual Arts Source has announced that it will cease to provide the site with content until HuffPost agrees to pay its writers – and it wants other HuffPost writers and contributors to join in.
In a post on the company’s website, Visual Arts Source publisher and co-editor Bill Lasarow writes that he was well aware of the Huffington Post’s payment policy when his company agreed to provide the site with content. However, in light of Aol’s decision to buy the Huffington Post for $315 million, the company has done some reassessing, coming up with two specific demands:
And just like the corporate titans of the American Right, it would come as no surprise if Ms Huffington, whom I am certain has a good heart and only the best intentions, were to assume the obvious position: Who needs these people anyway? They are not even employees.
Nonetheless, we shall remain on strike until these two demands are met. First, a pay schedule must be proposed and steps initiated to implement it for all contributing writers and bloggers. Second, paid promotional material must no longer be posted alongside editorial content; a press release or exhibition catalogue essay is fundamentally different from editorial content and must be either segregated and indicated as such, or not published at all.
One of the goals in organizing this strike, Lasarow explains, is to “professionalize” the relationship among the HuffPost and its contributors. Additionally, he writes, it is “unethical to expect trained and qualified professionals to contribute quality content for nothing.”…