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Updates on California’s Freelancer Law

Posted on Thursday, February 27, 2020 at 3:02 PM

In the news: Under fire, California is looking to revise its new independent contractor law to accommodate freelance journalists.

Last month’s changes to California’s freelancing law reverberated throughout the publishing industry. Freelancers who created more than 35 “submissions” per year faced unemployment and/or diminished gig prospects as the media companies they worked for scrambled to comply. Several freelancer organizations sued the state of California in an attempt to overturn parts of the law particularly damaging to the gig workers they represent.

Earlier this month, Kerry Flynn of CNN Business reported that California assembly member Lorena Gonzalez announced plans to lift the 35-submission cap to alleviate the burden on journalists and photographers. Read more here.

Also Notable

Female Reporters and Editors Band Together to Change Leave Policy

Recently, Mel Grau of Poynter.org told the story of six reporters and editors at the Boston Globe who banded together in 2017 to change the company’s family leave policy. “The women weren’t work wives or best friends,” writes Grau. “They were just colleagues who felt strongly that for newsrooms to survive and thrive, they needed to create an environment where women could advance in leadership.” Two years later, in 2019, their efforts finally paid off and the company overhauled its family leave policy. Read the full story here.

Paywalls: Evolving Strategies

These days, readers are running into new magazine and newspaper paywalls all the time. This week, Beth Braverman of Foliomag.com rounds up some of the more recent examples. This month, Women’s Wear Daily, the New Republic, and Fortune have started paywalling their online content. While Fortune will continue to offer some free content, the magazine will offer a lot of its content at three different subscription levels, Braverman reports. She also notes that the New Republic’s paywall is metered and that Women’s Wear Daily will take the “dynamic paywall” approach. Read more here.

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