Freelancers Take to Twitter to Say #EbonyOwes Them Back Pay

Posted by | June 14, 2017 | Uncategorized | No Comments

By Kenneth Quinnell

Freelancing Ain't Free

Freelancers Take to Twitter to Say #EbonyOwes Them Back Pay


Stories have surfaced in the past few weeks that Ebony owes numerous writers back pay for work they did for the magazine. A story from The Establishment spurred the #EbonyOwes hashtag into trending territory on Twitter. The article cites numerous freelance writers who say that the magazine owes them.

According to a press release, the National Writers Union/UAW Local 1981 represents 23 Ebony writers who are collectively owed more than $50,000 in unpaid wages. The union estimates that more than $200,000 in back wages are owed to as many as 50 freelancers. The magazine recently made a public commitment to fix the problem, but NWU President Larry Goldbetter said that words aren’t good enough:

Some of the invoices we’ve seen are over a year old. We are pleased Ebony Media has been responsive to the grievance, but we are now at a point where we need a payment schedule in writing. For a freelancer to have to struggle to pay rent because Ebony owes is ridiculous.

Here are some of the stories told on #EbonyOwes:

Still waiting on my $2,000 from @EBONYMag months after my work. Per my contract w/@thekylesfiles it’s 150+ days PAST DUE #freelanceisntfree

— Cat (@emdashcat) April 19, 2017

“Why Isn’t ‘Ebony’ Paying Its Black Writers?” Heh I almost wrote about this a couple of years ago. I’m still owed.

— Mikki Kendall (@Karnythia) April 25, 2017

Make that 11 #EbonyOwes. It’s #NationalVolunteerWeek but I’m no @EBONYMag volunteer. Thx 4 your article @BasicBlaecGirl. Ready to advocate

— Zerline Hughes (@zerlinehughes) April 25, 2017

I don’t know about the race angle, but I know about Ebony failing to pay writers. The magazine owes me $1,200.

— Eric Deggans at NPR (@Deggans) April 25, 2017

Last week I shared that @ebonymag hasn’t paid or contacted me & many others. This week they blocked me. I’m not even mad. I’m disappointed.

— Baratunde (@baratunde) May 31, 2017

Hey @EBONYMag I filed my story in November. It ran in February. You need to pay me. #ebonyowes

— Liz Dwyer (@losangelista) May 31, 2017

It’s #EbonyOwes story time courtesy of one of my very last experiences at @EBONYMag

— Pedro Vega Jr. (@pedrovegajr) June 1, 2017

Yep, for these pictures that I illustrated, I still haven’t been compensated. ⏰ #EbonyOwes

— NYANZA D (@nyanzad_) May 31, 2017

322 days for me and haven’t seen one dime from @EBONYMag while execs live live it up on the gram. Still disgusting. #EbonyOwes

— AJ Springer (@JustAnt1914) June 12, 2017

Kenneth Quinnell
Wed, 06/14/2017 – 11:49

Source: AFL-CIO

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