Guardian rates rise
FURTHER talks with the Guardian have resulted in an improved offer on fees. The company's final offer was an increase of 10% on all the minimum rates in the Guardian Freelance Terms and Conditions.
The offer was officially accepted by the NUJ, following consultation with the officers of London Freelance Branch and the Freelance Industrial Council, by Jeremy Dear, filling the gap in the negotiating team after former Freelance Organiser Bernie Corbett's departure. During the talks, which I, as new Freelance Organiser, attended for the first time, the company said they are dropping the proposed pilot project on spot sales. Instead, they want to re-negotiate their contracts with their clients to increasing spot sales.
Spot sales are individual stories or pictures sold in the UK or abroad. If the Guardian manages to increase its spot sales this will mean more revenue for the contributor. I have asked for a meeting to discuss exactly how this will work.
Now the bad news. Some photographers have received contracts from the Guardian that are causing concern. Although there is a bald statement, "You will retain copyright in your pictures", this is contradicted in the next paragraph. This gives the Guardian exclusive rights of use in all editions of the Guardian and Observer in paper form.
I have advised photographers not to sign this, and I have raised it with the company.