The online journal Straight Goods has published a comprehensive piece about the ongoing struggle against a new CanWest Mediaworks freelance contract. The Professional Writers Association of Canada has been active in protesting the new contract, which demands all rights, including a waiver of moral rights. From the article:
"...when the CanWest contract first surfaced, the terms seemed so draconian that members of the Professional Writers Association of Canada and The Writers Union of Canada thought it must be a hoax, as StraightGoods.ca reported in October 2004. Even the CanWest executive that SG contacted for confirmation was a bit taken aback when he first saw the wording, and emphasized that this was not the only contract CanWest used. Now it is."
"Of course, the newspaper industry is in turmoil. Readership is falling. Newsrooms are downsizing, and looking to wire services, free-lancers or former staff to supply more, more and more text. Free-lance rates have been dropping at the same time that publishers have introduced rights-grabbing contracts."
Read the full article at the link above, and see PWAC's press release about trends in freelance contracting here.
Cross-posted at pwac.ca