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Village Voice agrees to pay cartoonists
The hubbub over last week’s revelation that The Village Voice asked its cartoonists to provide cartoons for “exposure” and not pay all the while running a color story on “If Cartoons Are So Big, Why Don’t They Pay?” has caused the paper’s editor to issue as statement saying that they will now pay the contributing cartoonists. Here is the full statement:
I wanted to have a big special comics issue, but I had a limited budget. So in a well-meaning effort to make this work, I asked some cartoonists to provide work without compensation. In the last couple of days, it’s been pointed out to me quite clearly that this was not the best way to help out the cartooning industry. The thing is, we’re not a company that expects people to work for free for the exposure. And I’m making this right: I’m paying all of the artists in the special issue.
And hopefully buying them beers and working with them again soon.
The Village Voice
Putting aside whether The Village Voice was wrong to solicit uncompensated work (for an issue that explores why cartoonists aren’t paid well), I personally think if the cartoonists in question were foolish enough to provide work for “exposure” they’ve been handsomely paid and VV owes them nothing more. But it is a nice gesture.