seawasp (seawasp) wrote,

Modern Business: Am I completely wrong, or is THIS completely wrong?

EDIT: See my apology post. I'm not deleting this one because (A) the general principles are still true, even if the specific instance was incorrectly portrayed, and (B) I don't think one should go pretending they didn't screw up in public.

EDIT: Closing comments on this one since it seems non-useful to continue.

In my view of starting a business, if you decide you're going to start a business, you should expect that this will be a long, hard row to hoe, and -- most importantly -- it will cost you money and time. Online may not cost nearly as much (after all, you don't need to buy or rent that 5,000 square foot building, pay utilities, etc.), but you (or you and your partners in the business) should be shouldering the cost from the get-go.

So it boggled me when I saw, on LinkedIn, a guy looking for an editor for what appeared to be an SF magazine -- as an unpaid position. I stated that I thought this was unprofessional, and the gentleman responded rather woundedly, the gist of his response being basically that he was "building a brand and a name" for the launch of the actual product, "it's just a blog" now, that he had "117+ professionals" already contributing to it, and that he certainly intended to be paying competitive rates on launch of the magazine.

Now, this just seems to me to be wrong-headed. "Building a brand" is what you do as *part* of your business. You build it by providing your product or service, advertising, word of mouth, etc., but you always PAY for this. In the regular world a would-be owner of a bookstore doesn't expect someone will donate him the first year of rent free, send him a good supply of books as a starter, and so on; they pay for it all, up front, cash on the barrelhead.

Have I done free blog posts for other people? Yeah, sometimes; it's a professional exchange, partially. But if the person's stated intention was to use my stuff, and that of other people, to build him free publicity and hits so he could launch a business?

Is it just me, or does this just sound wrong?

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