Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Staffers say Globe and Mail forbids freelancing for Toronto Life, Chatelaine

The Globe and Mail is apparently forbidding its staffers to freelance for Toronto Life and Chatelaine, according to a posting on And it is imposing the same stricture on freelance contributors.
John Stackhouse, executive editor at the Globe and Mail, has reportedly told Globe staffers they can no longer freelance for Toronto Life  and Chatelaine because the magazines are now considered “competitors.” What’s more, the same policy applies to freelancers who contribute to the paper, most of whom don’t earn enough from the Globe to support themselves....
Stackhouse did not return email or phone messages to Opinion on what’s driving the ban is divided. One storyline suggests management is peeved at a feature story in last fall’s Toronto Life which painted an unflattering portrait of the paper’s much ballyhooed design. Another theory is that the “new” Globe wants to attract advertisers who normally park their ad budgets at Toronto Life and Chatelaine.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't see any problems with the Globe doing this. It is within their right to do such a thing, and is common practice in many industries, including publishing. Why should they allow their staffers to help the competition? Either the staffers should put up or shut up.

4:41 pm  
Blogger D. B. Scott said...

Perhaps it has the right to so with staff; but not to demand it of freelancers who are independent contractors.

5:05 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, staffers are one thing but freelancers?!

Also, doesn't it raise the profile of the newspaper to have a name-brand staffer also write for popular magazines (and vice versa). Cross promotion?

This sort of nonsense--expecting regular freelancers to not write for extremely loosely defined "competitors", I mean Chats, really?, without paying a living-wage kind of retainer-- is a lot more troubling than the Transcon master agreement or free web use demanded by Rogers. I think this is the kind of stuff that can REALLY threaten one's livelihood as a freelancer.

Curious to know what the negotiating powerhouses (ha ha) at Canadian Writers Group will do about this, aside from issuing a press release, I mean.

9:43 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous 2:

If it wasn't for the Canadian Writers Group, Stackhouse's campaign would almost certainly be a lot further along by now. So far, no freelancers have been impacted.

10:23 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally disagree...freelancers or not, it is the Globe’s right to decide who they hire and what their rules are...If you want to write for the Globe either abide or stop working with is pretty clear cut.

4:38 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too many good freelancers would stop working for them, so it was probably smart to nix that aspect of the Toronto Life vendetta now that the tantrum has subsided slightly.

11:45 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I totally disagree...freelancers or not, it is the Globe’s right to decide who they hire and what their rules are..."

This has nothing to do with the right of the Globe to do this. Of course they have the "right" to do it; why on earth would they not? They can structure their agreement any way they want. An almost industry-wide grab of moral rights — which are inherent, unless the author signs (or is forced to sign) them away -- is a case in point.

It is, however, about being fair in their business practices, and about Stackhouse trying to bully people who have comparatively little leverage in the matter. Are you advocating that this is a just thing?

12:39 pm  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home