bendthebullet June 26, 2012 at 3:27 pm


Julie Takacs June 27, 2012 at 10:17 am

Fantastic. Bring it on! Congrats Paddy J!!! (artnet closes. artfagcity expands. thanks for taking up the slack)

James Kalm June 28, 2012 at 12:38 pm

As some one who has rallied against the exploitation of the
worker, I hope you’re planning on unionizing all your workers, and providing
them with the same wages, pensions,  and healthcare
benefits that you’ve demanded from others.  

Paddy Johnson June 28, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Thanks for your comment James, though it seems a bit misplaced. As I mentioned above, this is really a media partnership wrapped in an editorial title.  It has nothing to do with what we pay our staff and I have no control over what The L Magazine pays. 

That said, while our staff size doesn’t require a union at this point, we of course hope to get to that point. And yes, actually, we have written wages, pensions and healthcare into our future budgets. We’re not Sotheby’s though and we don’t have millions in surpluses to work with. So, while I’m flattered by the comparison, I don’t think it’s at all comparable. 

James Kalm June 28, 2012 at 1:47 pm

I’ll send over a union rep asap (AFL-CIO
http://www.aflcio.org/  or National Writers Guild 
http://www.nwu.org/ ?).  It’s better to get theses issues started on the right track from the beginning.  I’m sure you’d be proud to show the folks at Sotheby’s how its done.

Will Brand June 28, 2012 at 1:54 pm

I’ll make a note somewhere that we can’t have opinions about social justice until we make more money. Thanks for that.

Will Brand June 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm

Besides which, you’re drawing a false comparison.

With Sotheby’s, we stood with a group of workers who had publicly voice complaints. Someone had an issue, and we listened to them, and we decided we were on their side.

You, on the other hand, are making up a conflict out of thin air. To my knowledge, none of our writers have complained about how we run things here at AFC. You are speaking for them, without their agreement, to score argument points. If you’d like to actually ask some of our writers how they feel, and then take a stance that has something to do with the reality of the situation, I’m sure you’ll find all their emails are very public. They’re right there in the sidebar. Until then, leave us alone.

Corinna Kirsch June 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm

Paddy’s a freelancer, just like the rest of us. You can’t ask one freelancer to unionize another freelancer. If she were Paddy, Inc., then this might be an issue. 

James Kalm June 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Whenever there is one exploited art writer, that’s one too many exploited art writers.  Profits over people?

Unhygienix June 28, 2012 at 7:03 pm

Congrats guys. This means you aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. Even though you didn’t post a lot of my comments—R. Em…, yeah it’s me… ;P I make it a practice of checking in almost everyday. I don’t have an MFA and won’t be getting one because of the costs so the blogs are my education. Keep it up!

James Kalm June 28, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Are you saying the Art Fag City is locking out the unions?

Brian Sherwin June 30, 2012 at 6:51 am

 LOL I’ve raised this before. I’d like to know if writers for Art Fag City and Hyperallergic get a cut from Nectar Ads. After all, they fuel the content. If only Paddy and Hrag — and the other blog leaders, if you will — benefit…. well… WTF.

Brian Sherwin June 30, 2012 at 7:01 am

But then… I’m speaking as an art blogger who has never worked for less than $1000 a month when writing for others under independent contract. I’ll do guest posts for free…. but that is about it. 

Paddy Johnson June 30, 2012 at 9:27 am

Honestly, I don’t get why you guys continually harass me about AFC about this. You know I haven’t gotten paid a cent for years. You know that the amount of money we get from nectar ads at this time couldn’t possibly pay my wages, let alone anyone else’s. You know that we have built paying ourselves and our contributors fairly into our business plan. You know that we actively work to help contributors looking for work in jobs. Still, the conclusions you draw from information that has been repeatedly shared with you is that we are a ruthless media outlet, that is hell bent on exploiting our contributors. We are hypocrites for supporting the art handlers union, and we should inflict a union upon ourselves so we could finally understand just how bad they really are. 

We’ve spent an enormous amount of time trying to understand these issues. I’ve privately met with countless people about how to run a non-profit effectively. I’ve spent an enormous amount of time speaking with handler’s union and Sotheby’s. I’ve done this to make sure that the goals we have for the blog are feasible and to make sure our rationale on labor issues is solid and made clear to the public. 

I just don’t know how to lay out this information in a way in which I’m heard. It seems there’s literally nothing I can do to satisfy your complaints short of never using contributors until we receive an enormous trust. But even many of the large commercial blogs you seem to align us with don’t do that. 

I wish I was born with the funding of Louise Blouin but I wasn’t. As a result, we have to work with a business plan that reflects the money we actually have. 

Brian Sherwin June 30, 2012 at 7:07 am

 And as a taxpayer who enjoys the deductions available when working under independent contract. 🙂

Brian Sherwin July 1, 2012 at 9:20 am

No one is doubting your passion.

Paddy Johnson July 1, 2012 at 10:21 am

I know. I wasn’t talking about passion. I was talking about how I feel I’m not being heard, a point made further evident by your response.

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