UPDATE: If you enjoy this video, carve out time to watch this video about getting paid and what to include in your contracts. It’s a MUST.
There really is no need to write a lot about this video. It speaks for itself. All you have to do is substitute “writer” with “photographer” or “videographer” and everything he’s saying here you’ll totally relate to. I will point out that despite this very comical yet truthful commentary by Harlan, I still do maintain there are times when not getting paid is smart and strategic, but only when there is publicity or promotional value. And that is exactly what Harlan alludes to here. The lack of publicity value for the thing he’s complaining about. A lot of photographers and filmmakers take freebie gigs without doing the analysis to determine if there really is an objective strategic marketing value for them. Just because the freebie is for a big name, doesn’t mean you’ll benefit from it.
Next time you are considering doing that job for free, before making a decision, imagine a little Harlan Ellison Angel/Devil sitting on your shoulder shouting what he’s saying in this video. Enjoy!
(Note: Harlan uses some, shall we say, very colorful language. Make sure no little ones are present when you watch.)
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