Freelance Writer Beware

There's a new freelance writing site I visited yesterday. The name and URL are withheld because they've already done enough to embarrass themselves without my heaping more on their clueless heads.

Their goal is admirable: share more of the wealth of writing contracts with the writers themselves. I did take issue with their stance which basically says that good writing shouldn't cost big bucks when smaller bucks will do. Of course, they must have writers sign up to be part of their site in order to fulfill these writing contracts which aren't specifically detailed.

On the first page of the site, there are several grammatical errors along with what I call muddled sentences. These are convoluted sentences, usually run-on, that do not articulately express the point the writer is trying to make. I click to "About Us." No names or credentials are given. Just more buzzwords and the admonition that they're writers too.

I click to their solicitation page for writers. In a very short paragraph consisting of 3 sentences, there are 4 glaring grammatical errors.

Will I sign up for something like this? No. I can't believe any credible freelance writer would. If these people can't be bothered to proofread their own site, what does that say about their professionalism? Worse, if they did proofread it and think it's without error, then who are they to judge quality of writing?

Problem With Freelance Writing

This startup freelance writing contract business illustrates the problem with commercial writing today: everyone thinks it's so easy a caveman can do it. (No offense to Neanderthals. I know you guys are really cool and sophisticated.) Since this is the prevailing opinion, people who need content written, be it advertising copy, periodical articles, web content, etc., think they should get what they want for a few bucks. Or less.

If I had a dollar for every time in the last year I've seen job postings for clients who want 100 articles of high-quality writing for a buck each, I'd have a hundred times more money than if I actually took one of those insanely-low paying jobs.

Takeaway Truth

Freelance writer beware. If you sign up with a site, make sure the site isn't an embarrassment.

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