Is it really so wrong of the Atlantic or any publisher to ask an author, politely, if he is willing to provide a piece of content for free? Can’t the author simply decline and move on? Does an incompatible business negotiation have to result in moral offense?
More on yesterday's story Sigh... The Hide of a Rhino (why pay writers?) .
I commented on the article:
They've got 13 million readers a month, and can't pay writers? Really?
"Summarizing" is writing, which is work. So Nate Thayer works for an hour in return for what? A byline? A link?
A link from The Atlantic might be worth it, but I've checked several stories on The Atlantic site. There's not even a byline, so they're staff pieces. If contributors are offered a byline, without a bio and link, the "exposure" is worth nothing.
What it boils down to is that The Atlantic, a commercial publication, feels quite happy treating journalists like hobbyists.
They've got a heck of a lot of nerve.