December's Trireme Award for "the worst terms since I was chained to the oars" goes to Canadian magazine Mélange, which expects to be on sale in the UK soon. The publication reportedly has a policy of taking one "complimentary" article in return for promises of joining the editorial pool and receiving regular commissions. One freelance who accepted this deal got a brief to write a "complimentary" article approaching 5000 words plus pictures, which they politely declined. But the mag had already trailed it...
While turning down the brief was the right thing to do, agreeing in the first place to do a "complementary" article in return for permission to work was not.