Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/12/23

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Subject: [Leica] pay on publication was Leica timing
From: (Ted Grant)
Date: Wed, 23 Dec 1998 06:33:40 -0800

David Morton wrote:

>I said it with a smiley, but I was only half joking. I hate getting vague
>commissions, delivering what I understand they want, and then getting told
>"Oh, we were thinking more along the lines of blah blah blah". Well if
>that's what you were thinking, telling me before I submitted the piece
>would have been a *really* good idea.

Hi David,

Yep that kind of BS happens on this side of the pond also. I have become so
skeptical of publications I rarely shoot for them when they call. Unless
they put it in "Writing!" exactly what they want and what was agreed upon
in the discussion. Some twit visually challenged art director/editor who is
usually paid far beyond their ability to find the toilet, will try to twist
his change of mind back on the photographer, at the photographers expense.

Seeing it in writing must be a rub-off on me after dealing with legal
begals, no offence intended legal lads, better you're with me than agin

<<<In the UK the situation can be *dire*, as many publications pay on
*publication*, or even a month *after* publication, and not on delivery.
That means it can be 90 or 120 days or longer from doing the work to
getting paid.>>>

I stopped shooting for anyone who mentions "payment on publication" because
some of those morons change the editorial content after the shoot and may
not use it for another six months, meanwhile you're left hanging for out of
pocket expenses till publication. Forget it!

My line is, "Do you get paid after publication?"  If so, I'll wait till
after publication. However, if you're paid every two weeks then I expect to
get paid as soon as the assignment is completed. And if you can't do that,
then get out of my face! I'm not in the benevolent society non-profit
business of carrying  publication companies.

The kind of companies I like dealing with are those who bring-up payment
before  Sandy or I have to broach the subject.Particularly when they want
to know how much advance you require before you have left their office.

If the assignment is particularly lengthy I insist on a 1/3 advance, 1/3
half way through and final 1/3 on completion of the assignment. This is
somewaht similar to the movie industry. And you have people who say we
don't deal like that and then my answer is, "Tough, that's the way I deal
with clients."

This is a two way partnership on any assignment, they want it done and you
want to provide, it's as simple as that. If they have a contract to sign
you whip out your contract for them to sign. That's usually a big surprise!

Photographers are always getting screwed by legal departments of government
or companies because their contracts are always stacked in the house
favour, but sometimes you should see the look on their faces when you bring
out your contract to be signed. They nearly have a bird and want to run it
by the lawyers and make a big deal out of it, however they expect the
photographer to just jump and sign with nary a question.

So you see I love people, but hate "Payment after publication companies and
don't give them the time of day.  Look at it this way," What's good for
their CEO is good enough for me and I haven't seen a CEO yet that gets
"paid after publication!" :)

Ted Grant
This is Our Work. The Legacy of Sir William Osler.