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Monday, April 03, 2006

And I thought "cheeseball bottom feeder" was obnoxious...

I discovered an amazing piece at blogcritic.com by William I. Lengeman III (hereafter Wm3). This missive, "Don't Piss in the Pool," is Wm3's rant against lower paying freelance content writing.

Let me preface all future remarks by noting that Wm3 states his argument is directed toward those "bottom feeders offering such princely sums as $1.00 per article..." It's hard to tell exactly what he means by that. A buck for a 50 word forum post, for instance, is a lot different than a buck for 1,000 words. Additionally, Wm3 is prone to a bit of hyperbole. That, and his general tone, leads me to believe that his venom is directed toward those who seek and write content for bargain prices. I have no idea what his cut-off point would be--perhaps two cents per word would satisfy him--but I sincerely doubt that based on a full reading of his commentary. Read it and you will know what I mean.

Did you read it? If not, go back to that link and check it out.

OK, for the moment I am going to pass on dissecting this one sentence at a time. Let's just say I think Wm3 is wrong on several fronts. Several. I do want to revisit the piece's conclusion, however. Wm3 writes:

"Let me put it in more blunt terms. You know that anyone who would write for such a pittance is the kind of person who's going to piss in the pool (figuratively and literally). Isn't it better to keep them over there in the acrid smelling kiddie pool with the rest of the incontinents and dullards?I sure think so and I'm sorry if that sounds hard, but you know what? Life's hard and the meek don't inherit anything but a heaping mouthful of shit."

It's insulting and inaccurate. Plus, it's a little weird. That last sentence... What in the hell does that mean? Who is supposed to be meek? Why does the forced pool urination metaphor suddenly take such a scatalogical turn? If he really finds writers working at lower rates "dandy," as stated earlier, why does he feel a need to be so disrespectful?

Alot of people can make a good living working for lower rates. Many can use those markets to fill gaps in their schedule. There is a sizeable contingency of very solid writers who utilize these markets. I don't think labeling them as weak-bladdered dullards is accurate or fair.

This kind of elitist self-importance is sad in its own right. When used to buttress an argument that falls short on so many levels and is based on so many incorrect assumptions, it is unbearable.

I suppose we could go through all of the reasons this line of thinking is incorrect, but I don't feel up to playing Sisyphus tonight. This particular boulder has been shoved to the top of the mountain many times before. I won't shove it up there again over this sort of demeaning garbage.