All media work has value: Notes from the Media Workers Forum

by Lisa Ferguson   At a time when unpaid internships prevail and precarious employment seems the norm, how should institutions better protect interns, and what can we media workers do to protect ourselves? These questions were the focus of the Media Workers Forum, an event for CWA Canada Associate members — student, aspiring and precarious (intern, […]

Posted on November 20, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Debate on unpaid internships still evolving

Toronto panel discusses why, despite crackdowns, unpaid internships remain all too common.     By Marielle Torrefranca   The past few years have seen a crackdown on corporations and organizations that are still hiring unpaid interns. Despite the pushback, there is still a demand for internships, most unpaid. Why is the demand still so strong? That […]

Posted on October 23, 2015 at 9:09 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

The Problem of Press Trips

by Keph Senett Freelance writers are masters of ingenuity. We have to be. Decreasing wages and increasing demands have made full-time freelance writing a losing proposition. Those of us who wish to remain in the field quickly develop strategies to make it work: We stack assignments, boost our incomes with part-time jobs, and network like […]

Posted on August 26, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Expertise Finder: Quick source search for journalists

by Rachel Sanders Next time you need to find that perfect “expert source” for a story you’re working on, forget Google and head straight for Expertise Finder instead. Type in the subject you’re writing about and the website will comb through its database of 20,000 media-friendly academics from universities and colleges across North America to find the ones that fit. The […]

Posted on May 29, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · One Comment · Tagged with: , , ,

CWA Canada releases project on media worker rights and labour reporting

by Emily Katz  Labour stories are getting lost. At least, that’s what research for the recently launched Media Works: A Labour Rights and Reporting Project has discovered. At a time when people in Canada are spending more hours than ever traveling to, thinking about, and simply being at work, this is concerning. As handbook co-writer Haseena […]

Posted on May 8, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

Canadian journalism schools and the internship issue… Work for pay or pay to work?

by Sara Tatelman   “Volunteer to do something which is at least somewhat related to your expertise,” Stephen Poloz, governor of the Bank of Canada, urged unemployed youth in a widely criticized November 2014 speech. More often than not, following this advice would mean undertaking an unpaid internship rather than helping at a food bank, […]

Posted on April 2, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Connect the Docs offers unique online tools for documentary filmmakers

by Luigi Benetton The Victoria documentary film community gathered on Wednesday, January 28 to discuss and watch clips from the upcoming doc Election Day in Canada. The screening happened in other locations simultaneously thanks to everyday tools – streaming video, social networks and the Open Cinema site – that helped remote viewers participate in this […]

Posted on March 11, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · 2 Comments · Tagged with: , ,

Peter Smoczynski on independent filmmaking, risk, and the value of a freelancers’ union

by Rachel Sanders   Peter Smoczynski says that joining the Canadian Media Guild’s freelance branch was a turning point in the production of his latest film. “I didn’t feel I was alone anymore,” he says. Although the Ottawa-based filmmaker has spent the majority of his 40-year career working independently, it was a relief to have […]

Posted on February 24, 2015 at 10:38 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , , ,

Desmond Cole on crowdfunding to get to Ferguson

by Rachel Sanders Desmond Cole is a Toronto freelancer and political commentator who writes about policing, race and social justice for a variety of media outlets. When the grand jury decision came down in Ferguson, Missouri last Monday, he felt compelled to go there in search of the stories that weren’t being told. As a freelancer, however, his precarious financial […]

Posted on December 4, 2014 at 9:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Alternative Funding Models for Independent Media

by Christian Deo   Canadian independent media organizations face a critical question in light of the economic difficulties currently confronting all forms of media: ‘is independent media financially viable and sustainable?’ This was the focus of a panel discussion called Financial Models of Independent Media that was hosted by CWA – Canada at the Peoples’ Social Forum in Ottawa during […]

Posted on September 3, 2014 at 9:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,